Graham Bowlin Scores First Career eNASCAR Win in Dramatic Fashion at Watkins Glen

Tuesday night’s eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series action may have produced not only one of the best finishes of the 2021 season, but also one of its most surprising winners. Mind you, it’s not that Graham Bowlin, who entered the night second in points for Stewart-Haas Esports, was a surprising winner in general; he’s been one of the most consistent drivers in the series all season. Instead, it’s more a matter of where he did it.

Bowlin qualified on the pole, led most of the race outside of pit stops, and held off furious charges from both Letarte Esports’ Bobby Zalenski and 23XI’s Mitchell deJong to win on a road course on Tuesday night, as Watkins Glen International returned to the eNASCAR calendar for the first time in five years. It was the first career victory for the Texas native, and it allowed him to assert an all but guaranteed playoff spot on a night where, coming in, there were no remaining spots on the grid for winless drivers.

After outqualifying deJong by just .019 seconds, Bowlin took advantage of a frenzied first lap that allowed both Zalenski and Roush Fenway Racing’s Steven Wilson to climb into second and third. From there, Bowlin would settle into the lead, where he’d need to spend much of the next 50 laps driving the race of his life.

Early pit stops would be the biggest threat to changing up track position, as most drivers elected to take their lone stop of the race well before the halfway point, but by pitting a lap earlier than Zalenski, Bowlin would not only maintain the top spot, but also gain some more of a cushion as Zalenski lost over a second and briefly fell into deJong’s clutches.

From there, the two road course aces would battle with everything they had to catch Bowlin, but to no avail. Zalenski would be the first to try, but like the first half of the race, couldn’t do much once he finally got to Bowlin’s bumper. deJong would get past Zalenski in the closing stages and would come even closer, even bumping Bowlin twice coming out of the Bus Stop in the final lap, but Bowlin would once recover.

Undeterred, deJong would stay on pace and make one more attempt at the pass from the outside going into the final corner. The duo would touch, and deJong would slide up into the outside retaining wall. Bowlin would drive on to take the victory, with Zalenski sliding past deJong for second in the drag race to the finish as well.

Full results from Tuesday’s eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series race at Watkins Glen International were as follows:











1110Graham A. BowlinFord50421:10.72640
2383Bobby ZalenskiChevrolet50-0.75311:10.40035
3223Mitchell deJongToyota50-0.96901:10.62634
4417Steven WilsonFord50-3.52701:10.64833
5525Nick OttingerChevrolet50-7.13321:10.95732
6797Logan ClampittChevrolet50-11.82001:10.88531
792Garrett ManesToyota50-15.30801:11.01330
8655Vicente SalasFord50-18.48401:10.73329
9218Michael ContiChevrolet50-18.73001:11.17528
10123Corey VincentChevrolet50-21.53301:11.14027
11832Keegan LeahyToyota50-22.18601:11.19326
12104Ryan Michael LuzaFord50-23.68701:11.32825
131546Jimmy MullisToyota50-25.20901:11.27724
141841Dylan DuvalFord50-27.14401:11.07923
151938Casey KirwanFord50-27.37201:11.44622
161366Blake ReynoldsChevrolet50-27.70201:11.19721
171621Garrett LoweFord50-30.10801:11.45020
181790Zack NovakToyota50-36.36201:11.55819
19141Ashton CrowderToyota50-36.65351:11.50418
202544Anthony BurroughsChevrolet50-43.09701:11.25717
212324Jake NicholsFord50-45.98301:11.53916
222075Matt BussaFord50-46.38001:11.22515
231167Allen BoesChevrolet50-50.23101:11.20314
24269Michael GuestFord50-54.03701:11.84513
252251Ray AlfallaToyota50-58.50701:11.57512
262777Bob BryantChevrolet50-58.73901:11.51811
273088Brad DaviesChevrolet50-59.09601:11.13910
282436Chris ShearburnChevrolet50-59.63201:11.7349
292918Femi OlatToyota50-1:00.73501:11.7798
303815Caine CookFord50-1:08.70601:11.6467
313479Ryan DoucetteFord50-1:09.15001:11.6966
322814Blade WhittFord50-1:09.62001:11.5975
333611Malik RayFord49-1 L01:11.8554
343529Zack NicholsFord49-1 L01:11.4103
353737Derek JustisChevrolet49-1 L01:12.5492
363947Brian SchoenburgChevrolet49-1 L01:12.9021
37336Nathan LyonFord47-3 L01:11.2011
383152Jake MathesonFord21-29 L01:12.0561
393216John GorlinskyFord19-31 L01:12.2831

The eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series playoff grid through 13 rounds is as follows:

  1. Mitchell deJong, 2 wins
  2. Graham Bowlin, 1 win
  3. Keegan Leahy, 1 win
  4. Bobby Zalenski, 1 win
  5. Michael Conti, 1 win
  6. Vicente Salas, 1 win
  7. Logan Clampitt, 1 win
  8. Jimmy Mullis, 1 win
  9. Bob Bryant, 1 win
  10. Ryan Luza, 1 win

The eNASCAR Coca-Cola iRacing Series regular season winds down in two weeks’ time at Michigan International Speedway, with a race victory the last chance for a select group of drivers to force their way into the 10-driver playoff field. As always, coverage begins with iRacing Countdown to Green at 8:30PM ET, with the racing action picking up at 9PM ET on and iRacing’s social media channels. For more information on iRacing and for special offers, visit

Images via Justin Melillo