It may seem patently obvious, but you can’t gain ground with a sixth-place finish when the two drivers you’re chasing are finishing first and second.
That’s the source of Clint Bowyer’s frustration. With a strong car and a promising fuel-mileage strategy, Bowyer was a potential race winner in Sunday’s AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, but, ultimately, he was no match for Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup leader Jimmie Johnson and second-place Brad Keselowski, who crossed the finish line 1-2.
In his first season with Michael Waltrip Racing, Bowyer held onto third in the standings with two events left in the Chase, but dropped 10 more points to Johnson and fell to 36 back. Barring catastrophes to both drivers ahead of him, Bowyer, who finished sixth Sunday, will have to wait until 2013 for another shot at his first championship.
“It’s just unbelievable,” Bowyer said. “You keep having these top-10 runs, flirting with the top five week in and week out, and, unless you’re winning th...