TULSA, Okla. — Cole Bodine’s outing with Driven2SaveLives during the 35th Lucas Oil Chili Bowl Nationals only scratched the surface of the plans he has this year with Clauson Marshall Racing.
Bodine plans to step up in his driving duties with the team co-owned by Tim Clauson and Richard Marshall, tackling a schedule that includes both midget and non-winged sprint car races.
His plans come as a result of the continued partnership between Driven2SaveLives, the Indiana Donor Network’s initiative aimed at raising awareness of the importance of organ, eye and tissue donation, and CMR, which won both the 2018 USAC sprint car title and 2019 USAC midget championship.
“I’m more than honored to be with Driven2SaveLives for the rest of this year,” said Bodine. “We’ve had some really good luck together in the past and if you look back on it, Tulsa is where my career kind of jump-started in 2019, when I made the (Chili Bowl) A Main with CMR in my second year here. We came to race and pass some cars and I felt like we did a lot of that throughout the week, all the way through Saturday.
“To be the last car in and race our way up to finish 11th, I feel like showed a lot of the potential we have together and we hope to build on that going forward.”
Though their plans are ambitious, CMR and Bodine won’t be chasing points with any particular series. Their focus is simple.
“We want to win as much as we can,” Bodine said.
Bodine’s non-winged sprint car plans continue a progression he started last summer, after acquiring a car that he and his father fielded in selected events across various sanctioning bodies.
The 22-year-old native of Rossville, Ind., had highlight runs with the USAC AMSOIL National Sprint Car Series, finishing 10th in the season finale at Lawrenceburg (Ind.) Speedway; and with the POWRi WAR Sprint League, where he earned a third-place finish at Missouri’s Valley Speedway in June.
“Man, my dad and I got a deal going last year, where we bought one of the CMR cars and just took it out when we could,” Bodine recalled. “The people I’ve met in racing throughout the years, it’s amazing how they came around to help me out and get me rolling. We expected to race maybe five to 10 times last year and the next thing I knew, we were able to lock in at Lawrenceburg and make that A Main with USAC and finish 10th. Everything just really started in the right direction and it has been awesome.
“Last year just being me and my dad, mainly, and then this year looking to run (a sprint car) with Driven2SaveLives on board and it be out of the CMR shop … I think it’s going to be a lot of fun,” Bodine continued. “If we get to travel a little bit, as opposed to just running locally, that’d be great, I think. It’s mainly about trying to get in the seat as much as I can next year and, hopefully, everything goes well.”
For Bodine, expanding his schedule with the support of Driven2SaveLives brings his career somewhat full circle.
Driven2SaveLives was among the Clauson Marshall Racing lineup of partners when Bodine broke into the Saturday A Main field at the Chili Bowl for the first time two years ago.
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