NASCAR Cup Series: Alex Bowman signs contract extension with Hendrick Motorsports

Alex Bowman has signed a one-year contract extension to remain with Hendrick Motorsports through the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series season.

Alex Bowman signed with Hendrick Motorsports before the start of the 2018 NASCAR Cup Series season to replace Dale Earnhardt Jr. as the driver of the #88 Chevrolet. He signed a two-year contract through the 2019 season to do so.

While the first of the two seasons of his contract has not yet been completed, the 25-year-old Tucson, Arizona native has signed a one-year contract extension to remain with Hendrick Motorsports through at least the 2020 season, as Nationwide Insurance have extended their sponsorship of the #88 Chevrolet through at least the 2020 season.

Here is what Bowman had to say about the matter, according to ESPN.

“Having this kind of support is incredible. From Nationwide and our other partners to Mr. Hendrick, Greg and all my teammates, I feel very fortunate to be in such an awesome position. We have an opportunity to have a lot of success together. To hear a sponsor like Nationwide and a team like Hendrick Motorsports say I’m their guy gives me a ton of confidence and motivation to go out there and deliver results.”

Here is what Hendrick Motorsports team owner Rick Hendrick had to say about the matter, according to ESPN.

“Alex has the talent to win races and compete for championships. He and [crew chief] Greg [Ives] are clicking, and we have a lot of confidence in what they will accomplish together. From our driver and team to our sponsors, we have an exciting No. 88 program that’s set for the foreseeable future.”

Here is what Nationwide chief marketing officer Terrance Williams had to say about the matter, according to ESPN.

“We’re pleased with Alex’s representation of Nationwide — both on and off the track.”

The 2018 season is Bowman’s first season driving full-time for Hendrick Motorsports in the Cup Series, but it is not his first season as a full-time Cup Series driver, nor is it his first season driving for Hendrick Motorsports.

Bowman drove full-time for BK Racing in the #23 Toyota in the 2014 Cup Series season, and he drove full-time for Tommy Baldwin Racing in the #7 Chevrolet in the 2015 Cup Series season. He finished in 35th and 33rd place, respectively, in the championship standings in those two seasons.

Of the 72 races that were held in those two seasons, Bowman competed in 71 of them, as he failed to qualify for the 2015 Daytona 500. He racked up four top 20 finishes in those two seasons. His top finished was a 13th place finish at Daytona International Speedway in the 2014 season.

In the 2016 season, Bowman drove in 10 races as one of the substitute drivers for the injured Earnhardt Jr. He recorded three top 10 finishes, including a sixth place finish in his how race at ISM Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. He secured his first career Cup Series pole position in 2016 as well, and he did so for that race.

Last year, Bowman was a simulator driver for Hendrick Motorsports, as he did not compete in any Cup Series races. He did, however, compete in two Xfinity Series races driving the #42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet, and he won the race at Charlotte Motor Speedway to claim his first career Xfinity Series victory and his first career victory in any NASCAR series.

So far this season in his first season as Earnhardt Jr.’s full-time replacement driver, Bowman has competed in all 21 races that have been held. He has racked up eight top 10 finishes, including a career-high third place finish in the race at Pocono Raceway that was held this past Sunday. He took his second career pole position, doing so for the Daytona 500 to start up the season.

Bowman currently sits in 15th place in the Cup Series championship standings and in the 16th and final position in the playoff picture. He sits 56 points above the playoff cut line. Roush Fenway Racing’s Ricky Stenhouse Jr. is the driver right below him under the cut line in 17th.

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How will Alex Bowman perform throughout the rest of the 2018 NASCAR Cup Series season and then in the 2019 and 2020 seasons? Will he remain with Hendrick Motorsports after the 2020 season?

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