Alex Bowman expresses confidence facing must-win scenario

Unlike Hendrick Motorsports teammate Chase Elliott, who secured a spot in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Round of 8 with his Oct. 7 victory at Dover, Alex Bowman has only one path to the next round of the Playoffs.

Twelfth in the standings and 68-points behind Martin Truex Jr. in eighth, Bowman has to win Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway to keep his championship hopes alive.

Bowman has never won a race in NASCAR’s premier series, and six weeks ago, the driver of the No. 88 Chevrolet might have discounted his chances for an 11th-hour victory at Kansas. But the Hendrick cars as a group have shown improved performance of late, and that gives Bowman cause for optimism.

“I think with all the resources we have and the people and the knowledge we have at Hendrick Motorsports, I don’t think anybody is surprised within the organization when a Hendrick car wins,” said Bowman, who was 12th fastest in Friday’s opening practice. “I think we haven’t shown the speed, really, up until probably a month and a half ago, when we went to Vegas and ran really strong.

“I think, up until then, we hadn’t really shown race-winning speed by any means. But over the last month and a half or two months, we’ve improved a lot. And I really don’t think we’d be surprised if we won. It would obviously be great, and the first Cup win would be amazing.”

Bowman also has Kansas City ties that would make a victory on Sunday even more special.

“My dad’s family is from here,” he said, “so that would be pretty cool for them.”

Greg Engle
About Greg Engle 7421 Articles
Greg is a published award winning sportswriter who spent 23 years combined active and active reserve military service, much of that in and around the Special Operations community. Greg is the author of "The Nuts and Bolts of NASCAR: The Definitive Viewers' Guide to Big-Time Stock Car Auto Racing" and has been published in major publications across the country including the Los Angeles Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was also a contributor to Chicken Soup for the NASCAR Soul, published in 2010, and the Christmas edition in 2016. He wrote as the NASCAR, Formula 1, Auto Reviews and National Veterans Affairs Examiner for and has appeared on Fox News. He holds a BS degree in communications, a Masters degree in psychology and is currently a PhD candidate majoring in psychology. He is currently the weekend Motorsports Editor for Autoweek.