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  • Writer's pictureDominic Konareski

Michael McDowell's Indy Win Is A Product Of Determination

Imagine telling someone at the beginning of the season that Ford would win three races in a row and none of them would come from Penske or SHR.

Michael McDowell dominated the weekend. The No.34 Ford was the fastest in practice and qualified inside the top five, won stage 1 and eventually took the checkered flag.

The only caution came on lap two, overall we saw a nearly 80 lap straight green flag run to the finish. McDowell would hold off Cup Champion Chase Elliott in the closing laps, it was a thrilling finish to cap off domination.

This was McDowell's second career win in what was his 453rd start in the Cup Series. His first came at the 2021 Daytona 500, in which he only led the final lap. At Indy more than two years later he would lead over 40 laps enroute to the win.

You can see the massive change that both Michael McDowell and Front Row Motorsports have progressed over the past three years. McDowell is 38-years-old, but seems to be starting the prime of his career.

The Phoenix native has been in the Cup Series since 2008, but mainly ran from 25th-43rd the majority of his career. 2020 started a change for McDowell, putting up a 20th average finish and replicating the same in '21. Last season a 16th average finish would be set, and currently he has a 18th average with 12 races remaining. The biggest factor that shows improvement though is top 10s. McDowell has a combined 27 top 10s in the last four years compared to a combined 6 in the previous four.

Before the win to lock himself in the playoffs, McDowell was already in on points. All season long he has been consistent and contending for wins.

FRM also exercised their option on both McDowell and Todd Gilliland several days before the race. Keeping McDowell is huge, especially if the team is able to give him winnable equipment.

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