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Clint Bowyer Racing seeks Prelude three-peat

May 31, 2012, Clint Bowyer, Special to NASCAR.COM, NASCAR.com



Clint Bowyer Racing seeks Prelude three-peat

Each year, I cannot wait until the first week of June -- it's always Prelude to the Dream week. There's nothing better than going back as the defending champion. After my runner-up finishes in 2009 and 2010, it was great to find Victory Lane, especially after Jimmie [Johnson] won in 2010.

Clint Bowyer Racing has provided cars for Jimmie and me for the past few years, and each and every year my team gives us great equipment. I was so proud that Jimmie won in 2010, but I was a little bit jealous -- I wanted a Prelude championship, too. Last year, the track was very tough to pass on, and I think I led all 30 laps to take the title.

This year, I know defending the title will be challenging. We have both Dillon brothers in the field. Stewart owns the track, so he'll probably prepare it how he likes best. Aric Almirola has a really good car with Clint Smith Racing. And, of course, Kyle Busch is always up front in Scott Bloomquist's equipment. We are racing an extra 10 laps this year, and restarts will be double file. We're definitely going to have to take care of our tires and take advantage of the restarts as I'm sure a lot of guys will be dive-bombing into Turns 1 and 2.

Clint Bowyer Racing will bring two great cars for Jimmie and me. They've been working real hard in the shop in May, and they're looking forward to winning for a third year in a row. I hope one of us can win for the second time. We also have two cars entered in the Dream on Friday and Saturday after the Prelude. Jared Landers and Jonathan Davenport will be representing Clint Bowyer Racing, and it's $100,000 to the winner.

I hope everyone either can watch the Prelude in person or order it on pay-per-view. I just found out last week that there might not be a Prelude next year. It's disappointing, but I know it's getting harder and harder for drivers to commit each year with their already busy schedules. This year we have a NASCAR test at Pocono until 4 p.m. the day of the Prelude. I hope our Cup car is good there so my crew chief, Brian Pattie, lets me leave a little bit early to get to Eldora. I'll see you there!

Prelude to the Dream begins at 8 p.m. ET and is available on HBO Pay-Per-View. It can be ordered at www.PreludeToTheDream.org or www.HBO.com. Updates can be found on Facebook and on Twitter @PreludeToDream.