From the very start of the 2016 racing season Matt Bowling made it clear he would be not just a contender within his native Virginia, but for national glory in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series. The majority of his success has been centered around his home track of South Boston Speedway where heading into the final night of racing for Late Model Stocks, he enjoys a 50-point lead over Peyton Sellers and looks to collect his ninth and tenth wins at the track in 2016 on a Twin-75 night.
“We started off the season really strong at South Boston. We have just had a really good car every week and been very good all year. I think we’ve made a lot of good decisions at the race track and we got better as the year has gone on. I feel like we are where we need to be there and had a pretty good last month which has kept me in the hunt for the nation. We got one more race this weekend there and hopefully we can close it out with two wins.”
While his points lead at South Boston is wide, his lead in the NWAAS Dvision I standings is anything but, with just one point over Connecticut Modified driver and 2010 champion Keith Rocco. Rocco told Speed51 a week ago that he has his eyes only on his own racing, but Bowling is keeping track of what is happening with “Kid Roc” in the Constitution State.
“We’ve been keeping up with Rocco since he’s the closest one to us. He’s doing all he can do I’m sure just like we are. It seems like every time we win he wins and every time we have a bad weekend he has a bad weekend, just keeping it really close. It’s going to come down to the last weekend it seems like.”
With South Boston wrapping up Saturday and two more points weeks remaining afterwards, Bowling’s choice of schedule will be critical. Although he has said nothing is set in stone, he has his eyes set on potentially running two tracks that have been good to him this season.
“Kenly (Southern National Motorsports Park) definitely is. We got two wins down there the two times we’ve been. I’ve had some good runs at Dominion (VA) too, just haven’t been able to get a win there yet. I definitely would like to do that. You’ll probably see us at Dominion and Kenly (NC) the following week. We’ll see how this weekend goes and where we are in points.”
Despite a few recent mechanical troubles, Bowling is also not worried in the slightest about the weekend ahead.
“We had one bad race there the other week and some problems at Kingsport. It’s just random stuff happening, but I think we’ll be in good shape for this weekend and we’ll see what happens.”
-By Connor Sullivan, Speed51.com State Editor (CT, MA, Long Island) – Twitter: @Connor51CT
-Photo Credit: South Boston Speedway