Ladies and Gentlemen, Welcome to this week’s edition of Bowman Gray Q&A. I had the opportunity to get up with Sportsman Series driver and winner of the Sportsman’s Midway Mobile Storage 100, Kevin Neal. As Kevin’s currently second in points with two wins. Hope you guys enjoy.
Q: What got you interested in racing?
A: My uncle Tommy Neal started racing when I was around 8 years old. With my dad being his oldest brother, I always seemed to be around the shop, I mean what kid doesn’t wanna be around race cars. I helped him as I got older and eventually got the itch to drive myself. The rest is history!
Q: What holds your love/attention for racing?
A: My love for racing is seeing all the kids and (my 10 year old son) so excited just like when I was young! I’m constantly reminded of how important it is to set a great example for our next generation. The strategy of setup and working on the cars in the shop keep my attention. I love math and racing is one big equation. Sometimes you get A’s and sometimes well, u don’t do so well. But the lower moments in racing is what will define you and your team!
Q: Of all of your competitors who would you say you enjoy racing with and being able to talk to and get pointers from?
A: Believe it or not I really like racing with John Holleman 4. We have always had a mutual respect and it’s great to race like that. (Derek) Stoltz, (Zack) Clifton and (Michael) Adams are fierce competitors that hold my respect also. I don’t really ask for advice because I’m more of a find out for myself kinda person. Trusting your competitors is the first mistake in racing!
Q: How special was it for you to be able to win the Sportsman’s Midway Mobile Storage 100 this past weekend? Where does it ranks among all of your victories in your career?
A: It was very special! I won it back in 2011 and now. They don’t get any sweeter than that race! It’s the best of the best racing each other up front for a 100 Laps. And it’s a really nice trophy lol. Just to be able to last a 100 Laps without mechanical failure and run up front is an accomplishment. It’s probably right beside my first career win in 2005. These races and BGS keep getting harder to win and right now we’re winning races! I’m Happy.
Q: What is it like being able to race side by side with your uncle Tommy Neal?
A: I’ve always loved racing against my childhood hero! Hopefully one day I can do that with my son. I love him on and off the track! Racing is different now from when I helped him, but he thought me a lot of moral values in the sport that still apply today in any series!
Q: I know your son plays little league baseball, but could we one day we see him continue the family tradition and get behind the wheel and race?
A: He currently is racing champ buggies when we’re not racing BGS. The Madhouse takes your whole summer and there isn’t a lot of time for much else. I wanna win this title this year and I’m done! All focus will be directly on him after that! I would like a title to show for of all the years and money spent! I’ve won a bunch of races at different tracks included but nothing would compare to being labeled as a BGS Sportsman Champion!
Q: Last question, it’s something I like to ask drivers. “If you could race against any legendary driver (BGS or NASCAR) who would it be?”
A: Sportsman series driver Jimmy Johnson #17! He could win races with a car most couldn’t unload off the trailer! He was a true definition of a “Wheelman”! I feel that term is used too loosely these days. There’s a lot of high dollar equip and technology out there! All of us modern day racers couldn’t wheel these old heavy stock front clip cars around the famed 1/4 mile. He was simply a Bad Ass and he was there to win! I would love the opportunity to go wheel to wheel with him! He won 99 races at the Madhouse and you don’t do that just because you got a good car!!!
I want to wish Kevin the best of luck for the remainder of this season. Make sure you’re at the Madhouse this Saturday night for the action-packed twin 50-lappers for the Brad’s Golf Cars Modified Series with the double-file restart cone and the “Madhouse Scramble”. Also, the Sportsman Series will battle it out in two 20-lap races, Street Stock Series competes in a 20-lapper, and the Stadium Stock Series with 15-lap races.
Plus, one lucky fan will win a $1,000 Jewelry Shopping Spree from Davie Jewelers.