Clint Bowyer is optimistic he will remain part of Richard Childress Racing's driver lineup in 2012, despite his contract being up at the end of the year. A Chase contender for three of the past five seasons, Bowyer expects negotiations with his team to unfold positively as he looks to continue with the team he has raced since his NASCAR debut in the Nationwide Series in 2004.
RCR has recently announced a multi-year contract extension with Jeff Burton, whose sponsor Caterpillar also renewed its association with the team. Kevin Harvick signed a new multi-year deal last season, which means Bowyer's is the only contract not concluded. The 32-year-old, who currently ranks 10th in the Sprint Cup standings, expects new deals can be put in place soon with his car's sponsors.
"I've talked to Richard a couple times, and hopefully we're getting close on that," said Bowyer. "I've just been having fun at the racetrack, focusing on what I can do. I haven't won, but we've been running well.
"The last four races have been really solid for us. If you go have fun at the racetrack, then I feel like the rest will come. We've been doing that and doing a good job at that, and hopefully we can get our sponsors locked in and get everything put in place and not have to worry about it."
Sprint Cup series points' leader Carl Edwards who drives for Roush Fenway Racing and Earnhardt Ganassi's Juan Pablo Montoya are among other key drivers whose contracts are up at the end of the season.
Hendrick Motorsports' Mark Martin will also move aside to make room for Kasey Kahne's arrival in the team in 2012, and it remains to be seen what the veteran's plans are for next year. Red Bull Racing's lineup for 2012 also is set to change with Kahne's departure.