Wichita based Kansas Strong will be will be joining NASCAR this season. The company, which states it main goal as promoting “the role oil and gas plays in advancing Kansas and sustaining the nation’s energy supply”, will be an associated sponsor on the car driven by Kansas native Clint Bowyer.
“I’m a proud Kansan so anytime I can partner with a company from my home state it makes me happy," Bowyer said in a release. " Their mission of promoting energy education and generating awareness around Kansas’ oil and natural gas industry is cool. I have a feeling we are going to run strong in Kansas this year."
FOX Sports is reporting that Bowyer is working on a contract extension with Michael Waltrip Racing and the two sides hope to have a deal done before the Daytona 500.
Despite what was a tumultuous 2013, Bowyer thinks the future at MWR is bright.
“We’re as prepared as we’ve ever been, since I’ve been at MWR,” said Bowyer. “We’ve tested a lot we’ve put in the work and the effort.”
The organization has gone through a tough six months after the “Bowyer Spin-gate” at Richmond caused them to lose long time sponsor NAPA and eventually, reduce the organization to just two cars.
Michael Waltrip Racing co-owner Rob Kaufman told FOX sports that Bowyer’s contract extension was not linked to whether or not sponsor 5-Hour Energy returns to the car, though he thinks the company is happy with the relationship.
Back on Track
Good news Bowyer’s teammate Brian Vickers, he is off of his blood thinning medication and is clear to return to the track this season. Vickers missed the final five races of last season because of a clot. He also missed 35 races in 2010 because of a similar issue.
“It's been tough, but I look back at the whole experience and I'm thankful for it," Vickers told the Associated Press. "I've learned a lot that you just can't force things. As much as you want things to happen faster, you just can't force that. You have to be patient and wait."
Exciting week almost in the books
If you ever wondered if NASCAR drivers read their own press clipping, the drivers at Joe Gibbs put any doubt to rest, and had a little fun with it.
All week long the writers at USA today Jeff Gluck and Nate Ryan have been keeping a running tally of how many times the word ‘excited’ was used at each stop. JGR just wanted to up the ante.
“Just like all the media members, I can tell they are really excited. They’ve had a really exciting week and I know everyone is excited we are the last group,” said JGR driver Matt Keneth. “Listen to the enthusiasm, excited, especially Nate and Jeff. I think they just took their shoes and socks off an our counting their toes.”