Michael McDowell (NASCAR)


Michael McDowell (NASCAR)

Infobox NASCAR driver
Name = Michael Christopher McDowell


Birthdate = birth date and age|1984|12|21
Birthplace = Phoenix, Arizona
Awards = 2007 ARCA RE/MAX Series Rookie of the Year
Cup_Car_Team = #00 - Michael Waltrip Racing
First_Cup_Race = 2008 Goody's Cool Orange 500 (Martinsville)
Busch_Wins = 0 | Busch_Top_Tens = 1 | Busch_Poles = 0
Busch_Car_Team = #00 - Michael Waltrip Racing
First_Busch_Race = 2007 O'Reilly Challenge (Texas)
First_Truck_Race = 2007 Kroger 200 (Martinsville)
Truck_Wins = 0
Truck_Top_Tens = 0
Truck_Poles = 0

Michael Christopher McDowell (born December 21, 1984 in Phoenix, Arizona) is an American racing driver who drives the #00 Aaron's Toyota Camry for Michael Waltrip Racing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

Beginnings

Michael, like many racers, started out his career in karting with help from his mother Tracy, who was an avid race fan. After 10 years in karts, he would win not only the World Karting Association championship, but he would also take back to back undefeated International Karting Federation championships, along with 18 consecutive feature wins.

Open Wheel

Moving up the ladder, Michael would move to the Star Mazda Series in 2003. He took victories at Sebring and Road America en route to a runner-up finish in the points. Michael won seven races in 2004 enroute to winning the series championship. McDowell would be picked up by Champ Car team Rocketsports for Surfer's Paradise and Mexico City, but was not retained for 2006.

Move to sports/stock cars

Grand-Am

During his run for the Star Mazda championship, Michael would meet businessman Rob Finlay at the Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving, where McDowell was an instructor. McDowell and Finlay soon established a partnership, and McDowell would drive his first sports car, a Porsche 996 in the Grand-Am Cup Series for Finlay Motorsports. In 2005, Michael would stay at Finlay, but would move up to the Rolex Sports Car Series, joining with veteran Memo Gidley in a BMW powered Riley sponsored by the Make A Wish Foundation. Together, they would finish sixth in the overall points and take the team's first victory at Mexico City. Michael made history by not only becoming the youngest driver to stand on podium for a Grand-Am race at Barber Motorsports Park,Fact|date=April 2008 but he also became the first driver since the great Mario Andretti to compete in both an open wheel race and a sports car race in the same weekend.Fact|date=April 2008 Michael would also drive the team's #60 BMW M3 in the Grand-Am Cup series to a podium finish at Daytona. McDowell would stick with Finlay for 2006, and was again partnered with Gidley. The duo would improve to fourth in points despite being winless. Michael would also drive a #15 Ford Mustang with owner Finlay, driving the car to a win at Barber. He would cap off his Grand-Am years with a second place finish at Miller Motorsports Park.

ARCA

Michael's accolades and talent impressed many teams, and ARCA RE/MAX Series owner Eddie Sharp would put him behind the wheel of his #2 Dodge for five races of the 2006 season, starting with the Governor's Cup 200 at the Milwaukee Mile. Although he scored a 34th place finish, McDowell stayed near the front of the pack. McDowell scoring a sixth place finish at Salem, fifth at Talladega, and fourth at Iowa. Considering his quick adaptation to all three tracks which he had never seen before, drivers quickly gave Michael the nickname of "The Natural".Fact|date=April 2008 Michael would return to ESR to run the full schedule for Rookie of the Year honors. During the first third of the season, Michael was seen as a bridesmaid driver who had the potential to win but did not have enough luck. McDowell was involved in controversy at Toledo when his ESR teammate, Ken Butler III spun him late in the race. Butler would take his first win while Michael would rally for a top ten finish. Michael would drop his bridesmaid status with his first stock car win at Kentucky Speedway. He followed that up with wins at Pocono, Chicago, and the season finale at Toledo. Although Michael was in contention for the ARCA Re/Max Seroes championship all season long, he was unable to pose a serious threat to Frank Kimmel for Kimmel's ninth championship. Michael would score a second place finish in the points along with Rookie of the Year honors, as well as scoring nine pole positions during the season. As McDowell moved to NASCAR, his ESR ride was taken over by former Formula 1 driver Scott Speed.

National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing

Michael would make his NASCAR debut in the Craftsman Truck Series. Driving the #17 for Darrell Waltrip Motorsports, Michael would qualify 29th and finish 30th after a late wreck. Michael moved to the Busch Series as a developmental driver for Sprint Cup Series team Michael Waltrip Racing. Driving the #00 Toyota, Michael drove at Texas, Phoenix, and Homestead, finishing 20th, 14th, and 32nd. McDowell was chosen to drive the #00 Cup Series car in 2008 after Dale Jarrett's retirement; David Reutimann replaced Jarrett in the #44 UPS car. Michael started 34th and finished 26th in his Sprint Cup debut, the Goody's Cool Orange 500, after a flat tire near the end of the race. After the race, he was criticized by veteran driver Jeff Burton for him blocking Burton's way to leader Denny Hamlin near the end of the race (McDowell was racing for the Lucky Dog free pass). In early August 2008, McDowell was pulled from the #00 Toyota Camry Sprint Cup car in favor of veteran NASCAR driver Mike Skinner for 3 races. Skinner helped evaluate the team's progress, while trying to get the #00 into the top 35 in owner points. McDowell returns to the ride at Richmond on September 6, 2008.

While qualifying at Texas Motor Speedway on April 4 2008, McDowell hit the SAFER barrier almost head on at approximately convert|165|mph|km/h, according to data obtained and reported by SPEED channel (165 mph to zero mph in one foot, as reported by SPEED's Bob Dillner, before reaccellerating the other direction). The car flipped 8 times with fire coming out of the engine compartment. [http://msn.foxsports.com/nascar/story/7989468/New-car-proved-it-works,-but-NASCAR-can't-rest New car proved it works, but NASCAR can't rest] ; April 4 2008; Jeff Hammond; FOX Sports; Retrieved April 4 2008] The safety features of the barrier, the HANS device and the Car of Tomorrow racecar protected him. He walked away from the completely destroyed car without injury, and waved to the stunned crowd.

NASCAR Sprint Cup results

() (Races in bold indicate pole position)

"*"Season in progress.

* - 19 of 36 races (Data as of June 23, 2008) [ [http://sports.yahoo.com/nascar/sprint/drivers/1031/career;_ylt=Ag.LkKdmtTwVK1vqleaPojchHrcF NASCAR Career Stats] ]

References

External links

* [http://www.mmcdowell.com Official Website]


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Michael McDowell — Status aktiv NASCAR Sprint Cup Statistik Beste Platzierung …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Michael McDowell — Données clés Naissance 21 décembre 1984 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Michael McDowell (racing driver) — This article is about Michael McDowell, the American racing driver. For other uses, see Michael McDowell (disambiguation). Michael Christoper McDowell Born December 21, 1984 (1984 12 21) …   Wikipedia

  • NASCAR Sprint Cup 2008 — NASCAR Sprint Cup Logo Die NASCAR Sprint Cup Saison 2008 begann am 9. Februar 2008 mit dem Budweiser Shootout auf dem Daytona International Speedway gefolgt vom 50. Daytona 500 am 18. Februar 2008. Der Chase for the Sprint Cup begann am 14.… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • NASCAR Sprint Cup Saison 2008 — NASCAR Sprint Cup Logo Die NASCAR Sprint Cup Saison 2008 begann am 9. Februar 2008 mit dem Budweiser Shootout auf dem Daytona International Speedway gefolgt vom 50. Daytona 500 am 18. Februar 2008. Der Chase for the Sprint Cup begann am 14.… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Michael Waltrip Racing — Holdings LLC Owner(s) Michael Waltrip Robert Kauffman Base Cornelius, North Carolina Series Sprint Cup Series …   Wikipedia

  • NASCAR-Sprint-Cup-Saison 2008 — NASCAR Sprint Cup Logo Die NASCAR Sprint Cup Saison 2008 begann am 9. Februar 2008 mit dem Budweiser Shootout auf dem Daytona International Speedway gefolgt vom 50. Daytona 500 am 18. Februar 2008. Der Chase for the Sprint Cup begann am 14.… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Michael Waltrip Racing — Eigentümer Michael Waltrip Rennserie(n) Sprint Cup, Nationwide Series Meisterschaften 0 Startnummer(n) #00, #56 (Sprint Cup) #99 (Nationwide Serie …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • NASCAR-Serie — Das Logo der NASCAR Serie. NASCAR Rennen auf dem Texas Motor Speedway 2008 Die NASCAR (National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing) ist ein großer …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Nascar — Das Logo der NASCAR Serie. NASCAR Rennen auf dem Texas Motor Speedway 2008 Die NASCAR (National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing) ist ein großer …   Deutsch Wikipedia