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Michael McDowell

Team: Leavine Family-Circle Sport-95
Age / DOB:  (32) / 12/21/1984
Ht / Wt:  6'0' / 170

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Michael McDowell finished fourth in the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway, which is his first career top-10 in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
McDowell’s previous best was a seventh in the 2014 edition of this race. He has four top-10s to his credit and all but one of them came at this track. In pre-race coverage, he was one of our top dark horse picks and rewarded that faith with a lot of points. Jul 1 - 11:47 PM

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Michael McDowell posted the second-fastest lap in Happy Hour for the Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway with a speed of 193.249 mph.

Most often top-end speed at Daytona is meaningless, but one might want to pay attention this time because it means McDowell was able to hang in with the lead pack. He is one of the top dark horses this week and should be on a lot of fantasy rosters.
Jun 30 - 12:49 PM

Michael McDowell advanced to the final round of qualification at Pocono Raceway and posted a lap of 176.918 mph to qualified 11th for the Pocono 400.

McDowell has been one of the top dark horses since last fall’s race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. He does not consistently run in the top 15 and that has kept his value low. But he almost always has a great price-to-points ratio that makes him attractive when stretching a budget.
Jun 10 - 10:34 AM

"Something got tight" and that was all she wrote for the Michael McDowell with three minutes remaining in practice one for the 400 at Kansas Speedway.

McDowell was uncertain if it was in the drive train of engine, but the car went up in smoke. He was 25th on the speed chart at the time, only one position behind Hendrick Motorsports’ Kasey Kahne.
May 12 - 12:27 PM

Michael McDowell scored a top-20 finish last fall at Bristol Motor Speedway, which was his second on that track in 13 starts with his current team.

McDowell has been a solid pick on several occasions this year, and given that there is a high potential for chaos with the new segment rules, he should be firmly on players’ radar screens.
Apr 21 - 1:11 PM

Michael McDowell earned only one top-15 and two top-20s this year, but with a modest salary cap, he has been a good fantasy value.

Four of his seven efforts landed in the top-25 and one more was a 26th. If he qualifies outside the top 30, he is liable to earn positive place-differential points and that will add to his appeal.
Apr 15 - 5:43 PM

Michael McDowell has a better than average chance of finishing in the high-20s this week at Auto Club Speedway.

McDowell finished 31st in two attempts on two-mile tracks last year, but this team improved radically during the fall after his Pure Michigan 400 run. He is likely to be more than two laps off the pace, but should be able to finish notably better than last year. If he does so, he will have a career-best finish on this track type.
Mar 21 - 8:49 PM

Michael McDowell finished 26th in last year’s spring Good Sam 500 at Phoenix International Raceway, which is his career-best finish there.

McDowell improved five positions over his previous best, but he failed to crack the top 15. Phoenix is his hometown and he has some extra incentive to run well there. This will be a good test of how many gains the team has made over the winter and whether his direct competition has caught up.
Mar 14 - 5:30 PM

Michael McDowell entered the Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway with a three-race, top-25 streak. He finished only 29th last weekend and expects to rebound in Las Vegas.

McDowell has shown a lot of improvement since last fall when Todd Parrott came on board with the No. 95 Leavine Family Racing team. A result of 29th was not stellar, but McDowell added seven place-differential points to his finishing result and that made him a moderately good value. Another positive is that he has been running at the end of the last 22 races he has started on a similarly-configured, 1.5-mile track.
Mar 9 - 9:55 AM

Michael McDowell’s best finish on a similarly-configured, 1.5-mile track came last fall in the Bank of America 500. He finished 14th in the first race with Todd Parrott as crew chief of the No. 95.

His next two efforts on this course type were also respectable. McDowell finished 22nd at Kansas Speedway and 23rd at Texas Motor Speedway last fall and that is the range he should be expected to finish this week. With a low salary cap in most games, he will be one of the best dark horse values in the game.
Mar 2 - 12:07 PM

Michael McDowell might be worth a roll of the dice for the Daytona 500; three of his last five Daytona International Speedway starts ended in top-15 finishes.

McDowell swept the top 15 last year driving this same No. 95 Leavine Family car. He missed the 2015 Coke Zero 400, but finished seventh in that event one year previous. Even with his 31st in the 2015 Daytona 500, he managed to stay on the lead lap.
Feb 16 - 12:57 AM

As previously announced, Michael McDowell will return to the No. 95 Leavine Family Racing team in 2017 and he will have Todd Parrott as his crew chief.

The addition of Parrott last fall made McDowell one of the best fantasy values in nearly every game. In their seven races together, McDowell finished on the lead lap four times, recorded one top-10, another top-15, a 16th, an 18th, and only one result worse than 23rd. Salary cap managers struggled to find a new level for the surging driver and when McDowell finished 10th in the season finale, he helped a lot of astute players win their league. "With both Michael and Todd returning to the team this season we are looking to maintain the consistency we found towards the end of last year and continue to push forward and build off the positive momentum," said Jeremy Lange, Vice President of Leavine Family Racing.
Jan 5 - 12:18 PM

Michael McDowell will return full time in the No. 95 in 2017.

In 2016, this team made the No. 95 into an opportunity ride on a few occasions for Ty Dillon. The grandson of Richard Childress will not need that next year as another program is going to be announced, so McDowell will get into the car fulltime. With the addition of Todd Parrott at Charlotte this fall, their results improved considerably and McDowell will come out the gates as a solid dark horse.
Sun, Nov 27, 2016 09:32:00 PM

Michael McDowell finished 10th in the Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway in a second Leavine Family entry to earn his first ever top-10 on an unrestricted speedway.

McDowell has been one of our top dark horses nearly every week since Todd Parrott came on board, but there was a little concern about how he would fare in the second entry for this lightly funded organization. Both he and Ty Dillon were on pace to finish well before the No. 95 was involved in a late-race crash, but the attrition helped level the field for the primary driver. McDowell has three previous top-10s at Daytona. including one this summer.
Sun, Nov 20, 2016 10:54:00 PM

Michael McDowell finished worse than 22nd for the first time since Todd Parrott joined the No. 95 team when he crashed last week at Phoenix International Raceway.

This was destined to be McDowell’s worst run since early October even before he hit the wall because he was 28th at the time. He will be in a second Leavine Family Racing Chevrolet this week so Ty Dillon can take over the No. 95. That means fantasy owners will not get a chance to see if he can rebound.
Fri, Nov 18, 2016 05:41:00 PM