I don’t care if you’re a fan, a driver, or a pit crew member: no one likes a NASCAR rain delay, especially when it happens during the middle of a race. It can be a lot of waiting, some more waiting, and then a little more waiting on top of that.
But, sometimes in the midst of that waiting, you can get a funny on-camera moment while the race-day broadcast team tries to fill time. There’s the time Darrell Waltrip hilariously switched between driver and team owner during the 1991 Winston 500, or when Danica Patrick was captured giving her team some extra help with cleaning up.
During a rain delay at the 2020 Coca-Cola 600, viewers at home were treated to another funny rain-delay episode, when Fox Sports pit reporter Jamie Little took the opportunity to grab Clint Bowyer for a quick interview. Let’s just say that Clint may know his way around a stock car, but he can’t work an umbrella to save his life.
In the above clip, you can see that Bowyer’s two-and-a-half minutes of analysis were pretty much boilerplate (for him, anyway). But, the real newsworthy moment came right at the end, as Bowyer was about to hand back Little’s umbrella.
At first he closed it, but after quickly realizing that Jamie would still need it herself, he tried opening it back up again. Well, as you can see, Bowyer’s umbrella struggles didn’t exactly bode well for Little. Or the umbrella.
As it turns out, Bowyer wasn’t the only one who struggled with an umbrella that day at Charlotte Motor Speedway. As the rain came down, Jimmie Johnson, a seven-time NASCAR champ, couldn’t figure out how to get his umbrella open. Thankfully, Alex Bowman was there to help him out.
Hey, at least Jimmie didn’t break the damn thing. I joke, I kid. But, just based on the final results of the race — Johnson finished 40th due to disqualification and Bowyer placed second-to-last — the umbrella troubles were clearly bad omens of some sort.
Umbrella issues aside, that year’s Memorial Day weekend race did mark a historic day for NASCAR. In the end, Brad Keselowski took the overtime victory after 405 laps had been completed. With a total distance of 607.5 total miles, the 2020 Coca-Cola 600 was the longest race in NASCAR history.
Now, back to Jamie Little and Clint Bowyer. Today, they work as co-workers, as Bowyer joined the Fox Sports broadcast booth full time in 2021. I don’t know what that first day at the office was like, but I like to think that Clint showed up with a brand-new, state-of-the-art umbrella for his favorite pit reporter. You never know when that next rain delay will go down.
This post was originally published on December 8, 2020.