Event: Kobalt 400 (Round 3 of 36)
Series: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
Location: Las Vegas Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval)
Format: 267 laps, broken into three stages (80 laps/80 laps/107 laps)
Start/Finish: 13th/10th (Running, completed 267 of 267 laps)
Point Standing: 12th (73 points, 59 out of first)
Race Winner: Martin Truex Jr. of Furniture Row Racing (Toyota)
Stage 1 Recap (Laps 1-80):
- Started 13th, finished 19th.
- Battled loose-handling car throughout Stage 1.
- Pitted during the lap 19 caution period, but lost several spots when another car slowed Bowyer on pit lane.
Stage 2 Recap (Laps 81-160):
- Started 19th, finished 14th.
- After several adjustments, the car’s handling improved, but was still loose.
- Bowyer gained two spots in the stage’s final four laps after restart.
Final Stage Recap (Laps 161-267):
- Started 17th.
- Started turning top-six lap times midway through the final stage.
- Restarted the race in 11th with nine laps remaining.
- Bowyer scored his first top-10 finish of 2017.
- It’s also Bowyer’s first top-10 finish since joining SHR.
- Bowyer’s previous high-water mark at Las Vegas was a second-place result on March 1, 2009.
Clint Bowyer, driver of the No. 14 Haas Automation Ford Fusion for Stewart-Haas Racing:
“It was a struggle. To be truthful, we weren’t the best all weekend, but we just kept digging. Buga (Mike Bugarewicz) didn’t give up on the box and kept adjusting on it and got me pretty good, the best we’d been right there at the end. It’s a top-10 and gives us some momentum. It’s our third race together and we got a top-10, so we’ve got to keep digging.”
The next event on the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series schedule is the Camping World 500k on Sunday, March 19 at Phoenix International Raceway. The race starts at 3:30 p.m. EDT with live coverage provided by FOX.