Michael McDowell Takes On “The Double”

Michael McDowell
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Michael McDowell will take on “The Double” this weekend, as he will run the NASCAR XFINITY Series race in Elkhart Lake’s Road America on Saturday then travel to Michigan International Speedway for the Pure Michigan 400 on Sunday.

McDowell is excited for this opportunity, as he recorded a pole and a second place finish in the NASCAR XFINITY Series at the road course. He will be racing for Richard Childress Racing and looking for redemption in Elkhart Lake this weekend.  And redemption McDowell received at Road America!  McDowell led the field to the checkered flag and picked up his very first major NASCAR victory!

As announced by the team earlier this week, Sam Hornish Jr. will fill in for McDowell in practice and qualifying in Michigan while McDowell is at Road America.

McDowell and Circle Sport – Leavine Family Racing look to ride a wave of momentum into Michigan after McDowell captured back-to-back Top-20 finishes for the first time in his career at Watkins Glen and Bristol.

Although McDowell has not raced the fast straightaways of Michigan International Speedway since 2013, he is confident in the team’s ability to perform under pressure and prepare for challenging situations.

“I haven’t run at Michigan in a couple years, but we’ve got some good notes and data since Ty ran there earlier in the year with the team,” said McDowell. “It’s a fast track, it’s wide, and has a lot of grooves. It’s getting wider as we run so it should be no problem for our team this weekend. For tracks like Michigan where I haven’t run in a while, you have to try to get a feel for what the car is doing, but also get into a rhythm of what you need to do and adjust both at the same time.”

Crew chief Dave Winston is eager to get to Michigan for the first time with McDowell, but also knows this weekend presents challenges for the team.

“Michigan is a very challenging race track, and with this new aero package I expect it to be even more so,” said Winston. “It is going to be a challenge for all of us. Michael will not be there until Sunday as he is off racing the XFINITY car for Richard Childress Racing at Road America. We are going to ask him to get in a car, with an aero package that he has not driven, one that is significantly different than what he has driven in the past, that was setup by another driver, and go race for another Top-20 finish. We have the confidence in him to do that and are hopeful for a good day come Sunday.”

Thrivent Financial will be the primary sponsor of the No. 95 Chevrolet during the Michigan race weekend.  Thrivent is a Fortune 500, not-for-profit membership organization of Christians. Offering a broad range of financial products and services, including life insurance, annuities and mutual funds, Thrivent helps its members be wise with money and live generously.

The Pure Michigan 400 will take place on Sunday, August 28 at 2:00 p.m. ET. Race fans can tune-in to NBCSN for live coverage and follow @CSLFR95 on Twitter for race updates.


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