As Clint Bowyer prepares to jump into his brand new ride for 2017, there is still some unfinished business to take care of with former organization HSCOTT Motorsports in the courtroom.
It has been announced today that Bowyer, who drove for HSCOTT in the Sprint Cup Series in a one-year deal, has filed a lawsuit against team owner Harry Scott for breach of contract and fraud.
Bowyer, who finished 27th in the final NASCAR Sprint Cup Series point standings, claims that Scott has not paid over $2 million to Bowyer between Oct. 20th, and Nov. 20th. $1.2 million would apply to his driver salary, and another $1 million in commission thanks to Bowyer bringing sponsorship. Bowyer brought sponsorship with him from his time at Michael Waltrip Racing, including longtime sponsors 5-Hour Energy and PEAK, both of which sponsored Bowyer since 2012.
According to ESPN, team spokesman Ramsey Poston, claims that the lawsuit is “frivolous and capricious”. Poston defended owner Scott, claiming that any chatter of Scott taking money out of the race team is “simply false”, and states that the organization will “aggressively defend itself, and ultimately prevail”.
Team owner Harry Scott faces uncertainty of his 2017 plans for NASCAR’s Premier series involving his organization. Its two drivers, Bowyer, and Michael Annett, both have plans for next season in place. Bowyer will take the reigns of the now retired 3-time series champion Tony Stewart at Stewart-Haas Racing. Annett, along with sponsor Pilot/Flying J, will step down to the XFINITY Series with JR Motorsports, piloting the #5 entry for Dale and Kelley Earnhardt-Miller. Annett will be reunited with former HSCOTT teammate Justin Allgaier.
According to ESPN, HSCOTT is expected to shut down its NASCAR Sprint Cup Series operation, and will sell off its charter — NASCAR’s version of a franchise — to another organization. One team in the mix reportedly is Erik Jones and the newly formed #77 Furniture Row Racing team, with backing from Bowyer’s former sponsor – 5 Hour Energy,for 22 races as the primary sponsor. 5 Hour Energry will also be a sponsor for Jones’ teammate Martin Truex Jr. in 2 races.
The 2017 NASCAR season kicks off with Daytona Speedweeks beginning February 18th.