Clint Bowyer likely to join MWR

Updated: October 2, 2011, 12:40 PM ET
By David Newton | ESPN.com

DOVER, Del. -- Clint Bowyer is expected to be introduced as the new driver for Michael Waltrip Racing on Friday at Kansas Speedway.

Team owner Michael Waltrip confirmed there is a press conference scheduled at the track on Friday afternoon to discuss "the future of Michael Waltrip Racing'' and that everything was looking good for Bowyer, a native of Emporia, Kan.

"I feel good about everything we're doing,'' Waltrip said before Sunday's Sprint Cup race at Dover International Speedway.

Bowyer said he's in the process of finalizing the contract with MWR and that he was "hopeful'' it would be announced at his home track.

Waltrip also hopes to keep his relationship with JTG Daugherty Racing, allowing the team to move that operation to its Harrisburg, N.C., shop but continue to receive cars and engines from MWR.

Co-owner Brad Daugherty told ESPN.com earlier in the week that they had an offer from MWR and that the plan was to move from MWR to its own shop.

"We'd like to think we will be together in some form or fashion,'' Waltrip said.

Bowyer, wrapping up the final year of his contract with Richard Childress Racing, will give MWR three full-time Sprint Cup teams in 2012. He joins David Reutimann and Martin Truex Jr., the pole-sitter at Dover.

Bowyer has spent all six of his Cup seasons at RCR, winning four races and making the Chase three times. Due to sponsorship issues, he was unable to renew a deal there even though both parties said they wanted to stay together.

Bowyer will be sponsored for about half the 2012 season by 5-hour Energy drink. Waltrip said all other details will be revealed at Friday's press conference.

David Newton covers NASCAR for ESPN.com. He can be reached at dnewtonespn@aol.com.

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ESPN Carolina Panthers reporter