Coming off a win at Sonoma on June 20 – Jason Bowles heads this week from his home in Ontario, Calif., to the half-mile track in nearby Irwindale for the King Taco 200 on Saturday, July 4.
Courtesy: NASCAR Media Relations
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – In last year’s chase for the championship in the NASCAR Camping World Series West, Jason Bowles (No. 6 Sunrise Ford.com Ford) gained a lot of momentum when he followed up a win at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif., with a victory at his home track of Toyota Speedway at Irwindale (Calif.). He hopes to do the same thing again this year.
Coming off a win at Sonoma on June 20 – Bowles heads this week from his home in Ontario, Calif., to the half-mile track in nearby Irwindale for the King Taco 200 on Saturday, July 4.
“We’re taking the same car back that we ran there last year,” Bowles said. “Hopefully, we can repeat by qualifying on the pole and winning the race.”
For Bowles, who was quick to win on road courses after coming to NASCAR from open-wheel racing, his victory last year at Toyota Speedway was his first win on an oval track.
“I think we finally just got all of our stuff together,” the 26-year-old driver recalled. “The car was good. And I think I improved my driving quite a bit on the ovals. Everything finally just came together as a whole.”
Bowles went on to win a second race last season at Toyota Speedway, as well as winning the season finale on an oval track in Northern California. He finished second in the championship standings, 48 points behind two-time champion Eric Holmes (No. 20 NAPA Toyota).
Coming off his win this year at Infineon, which marked his eighth career series victory – Bowles is just 16 points behind Holmes in this year’s championship battle. The momentum could shift toward Bowles and his team as it did last year.
“I don’t know for sure that the momentum is going our way, but I think for our team the attitude is going the right direction,” said Bowles. “Our performance is getting better every week. That’s what needs to happen to try to win the championship.
“This is kind of when we got our momentum going last season as well, once we hit the first road course and then went to Irwindale. And this year, we’ve got two road courses that follow it,” he pointed out.
Although Bowles – the 2007 Sunoco Rookie of the Year – is only in his third season in the series, he has years of championship experience around him in terms of his crew chief Bill Sedgwick. In addition to the two championships he won as a driver in the NASCAR Camping World Series West, Sedgwick is also a two-time champion as a crew chief. “He definitely has the experience and know how,” Bowles stressed.
Bowles, who raced in Late Models at Toyota Speedway in 2006, finished third in the championship standings of the NASCAR Camping World Series West as a rookie, with two wins and one pole. In his runner-up season last year, he had four wins and five poles.