McDowell on Bristol"We had a super fast race car in April. And my race lasted a full 60 seconds. Took the green, ran two laps, spun out, and really didn’t have that much damage. But we expired the damage clock, and our race was over. It was really unfortunate.
"So, for me, I definitely want to try to get redemption there. I hope we can back up our speed and qualifying effort again. David (Ragan) and I were in the top 10 in all the practices. Our Love's Travel Stops team qualified ninth. We were just having a great weekend as a team. So, we had that type of speed there, and hopefully we can come back and repeat that and finish off the race strong."
McDowell Bristol Stats
16 starts, 3 top-20s
Best finish: 18th
No. 34 Dockside Logistics Ford
Started: 29th | Finished: 25th
"We didn't quite have the speed we needed today. The fuel strategy could've worked out better in our favor, too, but we were a few laps short and had to pit under green in the closing laps. The set-up for this track is tough to figure out. We're not quite there yet, but we're definitely learning from it each time."
McDowell on Michigan"The first Michigan race was kind of a struggle. We just struggled with getting the balance of the race car and just having speed. So, we made some changes with our set-up, knowing we needed a different approach. I'm eager to get there and unload and see what kind of improvements we can make. We’ve got to change things up.
"Michigan is really fast and really challenging with the current downforce package we have. It's difficult to pass, so we'll definitely need to qualify as best as we can to give ourselves a good starting position.”
McDowell on Watkins Glen"Watkins Glen is one of my favorite tracks. I really feel like that should be a race where we contend. One of my best runs was several years ago in the Front Row car. We qualified well but had a part failure in the race. I really feel like now that we’ve run Sonoma and got to test the Charlotte Roval, I’ve got a little experience in Front Row Motorsports’ road course cars. And I feel like I know what I need at Waktins Glen. I’ve got a pretty good seat-of-the-pants feel of what I need to get there. It’s definitely a big race for us and for K-LOVE Radio. It’s one we circle.
"We've got some momentum going into this weekend. We had a good top-20 finish at Pocono and a good overall performance by our Front Row Motorsports team all weekend. We're making improvements, they're showing up on the racetrack and we absolutely expect to have a good showing at Watkins Glen."
McDowell Watkins Glen Stats
9 starts, 1 top-15, 3 top-20s
Best finish: 12th
Sunday, Aug. 5, 11:15am - The Bog (Watkins Glen International; special ticket required)
No. 34 Dockside Logistics Ford
Started: 13th | Finished: 16th
"Overall, it was a great day, position-wise. We made good gains. First run, our car wasn't very good but we made good adjustments. We had decent speed that middle part of the race, but the caution just fell at the wrong time for us so we lost a little bit of track position. Lucky for us the restarts were crazy enough at the end that we were able to get some spots back. It was a solid day for both cars, top 20 is a good day for Front Row Motorsports. This is something to build on and take good momentum going on to Watkins Glen. "
McDowell on Pocono"It’s always fun going to racetracks twice under somewhat similar conditions. A lot of times, we’ll go to somewhere like Phoenix at the beginning of the year and the end of the year, and things are much different. But going to Pocono, it’s not back-to-back, but it doesn’t feel like that big of a break in between. So, I do feel like you can fine-tune. We definitely have some gains to make. We didn’t have a bad finish of 21st in June. I feel like we executed the race well. But that’s a place where I would really like to run in the teens. So, we’re going to have to put a little bit more potential in the car.
"Restarts are intense for sure. A lot of it has to do with what lane you’re in and which lane’s rolling. Sometimes your lane’s not rolling and you really can’t do much. And then other times, you’ll get that opportunity to be aggressive and get three or four spots. And you don’t really know until you get rolling half-way down the straightaway. People start to fan out, and holes open and close.
"It seemed like this year the aggression level is the same, but people are more precise. We’re not having big wrecks anymore like we used to the last two or three years. It seems like people keep the intensity level up without having big issues now. But it’s always fun to get four- or five-wide."
McDowell Pocono Stats
Best finish: 18th
No. 34 Starkey Hearing Foundation Ford
Started: 29th | Finished: 26th
"We had to use our backup for the race after wrecking our Starkey Hearing Foundation Ford in practice Saturday, so that put us behind from the start of the race. But the guys did a good job getting it ready. We didn't have any issues and everything ran fine, we just could've used a little more speed."
No. 34 Love's Travel Stops/Roller Bites Ford
Started: 23rd | Finished: 24th
"We kind of struggled today. Luckily the 38 team carried the banner for Front Row Motorsports. We never got our Love's Travel Stops/Roller Bites Ford quite where it needed to be, although we salvaged an OK day with it. But we know we can be better than that. Our teammate ran in the top 20 all day and we know we can do the same."
Team FRM PR