Found November 02, 2012 on Start 'N' Park Blog:
HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. – Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth is calling this weekend’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AAA Texas 500 festivities the “Wild Asphalt Circus.” While the action on the track is sure to be wild, new Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Championship points leader Jimmie Johnson hopes it’s anything but a circus. Johnson heads to the 1.5-mile oval first in the standings by a mere two points over second-place Brad Keselowksi. While the duo is certainly in a better position with three races remaining than third-place Clint Bowyer, who’s 26 points out of the lead, and fourth-place Kasey Kahne, who’s 29 points out, even a circus clown can figure out that anything can happen in a Chase that has seen attrition claim valuable points from nearly all of its competitors at one time or another the last seven weeks. Anything can certainly happen at the wickedly fast Texas track, and Johnson knows that first-hand. In 2009, he was involved in a wreck on lap three that sent his No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet to the garage for extensive repairs. He ended the race in 38th place but was able to return to the track in relatively quick fashion thanks to another stellar repair job lead by car chief Ron Malec. Johnson drove to a variety of finishing positions at Texas during his five consecutive Sprint Cup championship seasons from 2006 to 2010. He pulled off a runner-up finish in 2006 and won in 2007. He then walked a tightrope from 2008 to 2010 with finishes of 15th, 38th and ninth, respectively. While he may have been playing with fire with the latter finishes, he did leave Texas with the spotlight on him, either leading the points, as he did in 2008 and 2009, or in second place, as he did in 2010. Knowing that anything can happen should create a three-ring circus-type atmosphere for fans, regardless of extracurricular activity the track has planned, adding to the drama that has already permeated the 2012 Chase. And while the rest of the field may be hoping to tame the lions that lead the No. 48 team, Johnson and crew know the best way to avoid trouble is to do what the tightrope walkers do – focus on the goal ahead, never looking down, never looking back, with eyes aimed squarely on the prize at the end of the line.  Do you enjoy going to Texas? “I really like the area. We’ve got some good friends who live there. (Wife) Chani is from Oklahoma, so sometimes we have quite a group, but it’s always fun. I love Mexican food, so we always hit our favorite spots when we’re there, too. I also think the track does a good job. Eddie (Gossage, Texas Motor Speedway president) and his staff always make it entertaining. They also have a passionate fan base, which is always fun, so I really do look forward to going to Texas.” Talk about how the Texas racing surface backs up against some of the other mile‑and‑a‑half tracks on the circuit. “It’s a little bit older, so we have a higher tire wear. Most cases, I don’t want to say you’ll never take two, but four tires really makes a big difference there. We’ll race from the line to the wall, something we weren’t able to see at Kansas. This new asphalt we have at places like Charlotte, Michigan, Kansas, Phoenix, it doesn’t wear the tire and the car gets really nervous. There’s a lot of grip. When you get close to the edge of traction, the car gets nervous and starts wandering around a little bit and then spins out on you. Texas doesn’t have that feeling. You can actually slide the car, drift it around. It’s really just the interaction between the tire and the surface itself. Texas, although it’s fast and plenty challenging, you can at least drift it a little bit and not get in trouble.” You’ve said that this is a stressful time. You’ve been through this stress many times. Have you found each year you’re better able to handle it and perform because of that knowledge? “Without a doubt, experience is so helpful. My friends, after we were able to win the first, second, so on and so forth, everybody would share with me through the season how stressed I was. I knew I was stressed, but I thought I was hiding it well. Year one, I wasn’t hiding it well. By year five, I found a way to enjoy myself down the stretch in the final race. That has led to this year. Last year, I didn’t enjoy myself because we weren’t performing like we wanted to. It’s hard to have fun when you don’t get the results you want. This year, we’ve been working hard, the results are there. It’s been even more fun and more relaxed and I feel we’re doing a better job as a result.”

NASCAR: Clint Bowyer and Kasey Kahne look to make history in title race

If Clint Bowyer or Kasey Kahne can capture the 2012 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship, they will have made history. The title would be the largest deficit anyone made up with three races remaining since Dale Earnhardt did it in 1990. Bowyer and Kahne sit 26 and 29 points behind points leader Jimmie Johnson respectively and have a decent chance at chasing down history. Earnhardt...

Client Bowyer Texas Press Conference VIDEO

Clint Bowyer, driver of the #15 5 Hour Energy Toyota for Michael Waltrip Racing, stopped by the media center at the Texas Motor Speedway to talk to the media. Below is the video from that meeting where Bowyer talks about his outlook for the weekend’s race, the AAA Texas 500. Video courtesy of NASCAR Media Group.

Clint Bowyer Currently Playing The Joker, But He Could End Up Being The Spoiler

Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images for NASCAR By: Toby Christie – Follow on Twitter @Tobalical With just three races left in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season, Clint Bowyer definitely leads the pack as far as being laid back. Currently Bowyer sits third in the overall point standings just 26 points behind the man atop the heap — Jimmie Johnson. However Friday morning...

Clint Bowyer AAA Texas 500 Race Preview

CORNELIUS, N.C. – No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota crew chief Brian Pattie is bringing two proven race winning chassis to the racetrack over the next two weeks as he tries to close the gap on the points leaders. Bowyer is third in the point standings trailing leader Jimmie Johnson by 26 points with three races remaining. Pattie is bringing Chassis No. 740 for Sunday’s AAA 500 at Texas...

Kasey Kahne AAA Texas 500 Race Preview

Great Clips has joined Hendrick Motorsports as a co-primary sponsor (with of the No. 5 Chevrolet team and Kasey Kahne for the Nov. 4 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway. This marks the first Cup-level partnership for the world’s largest salon brand, which now is sponsoring four competitors across three national series this weekend at Texas....

How many drivers still in title hunt?

NASCAR's Chase for the Sprint Cup is now definitely no more than a four-horse race. My gut tells me it's a two-horse race and that's the two guys at the top separated by only two points. Everyone keeps waiting for one of those guys to have a really bad race. So far, the only blemish that points leader Jimmie Johnson has had was the 17th-place finish after the crash at...
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.