On Monday at Michigan International Speedway, Clint Bowyer continued a pattern he would love to break.
In a feast-or-famine Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season, Bowyer ran fifth at Kansas in May, only to follow that with a 24th-place result, three laps down, in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte.
A week ago, he finished fifth at Pocono, only to have calamity strike in the next race, Monday’s rain-delayed FireKeepers Casino 400.
Bowyer, the event’s defending winner, had a top-five car through much of Stage 2, but on Lap 130, his No. 14 Ford broke loose as he was trying to steer away from Erik Jones’ Toyota and backed into the outside wall.
With his car crippled, Bowyer dropped out of the race in 35th place and fell two spots to 12th in the series standings.
“The 20 (Jones) got loose, and I tried to basically make an evasive move to get under him,” Bowyer said. “The 3 (Austin Dillon) was there and got loose under him and then I got into him and ran out of real estate. It was a pretty frustrating day. Pretty frustrating out there.”