The driver of the No. 48 Ally Racing Chevrolet Camaro is not going to test the waters in NASCAR free agency. Hendrick Motorsports and Alex Bowman announced on Friday, June 18, that they had reached an agreement on a two-year contract extension. Bowman will remain with Hendrick through the 2023 season.
The driver of the No. 48 and HMS general manager Jeff Andrews gathered team members together on Tuesday, June 15, and made the special announcement. They served a special Nashville-themed meal to the shop employees and then confirmed that Bowman will remain in the No. 48 for at least two more years.
“(I’m) excited about it (and) obviously excited to continue to work with Ally and drive the No. 48 car,” Bowman said in a statement, per HMS. “It’s been a lot of fun this year and cool to have a couple wins already.” The Arizona native will now take part in the inaugural Ally 400 at Nashville Superspeedway on Sunday, June 20.
Bowman is Currently Amid His First Multi-Win Season
Now in his fourth full-time season with Hendrick Motorsports, Alex Bowman is enjoying a career year. He has two wins in the first 16 races, topping his previous best of one per year. Bowman took the checkered flags at Richmond Raceway and Dover International Speedway.
In addition to winning twice and punching his ticket to the playoffs, Bowman has four top-five finishes and eight top-10s. He has been one of the Cup Series’ best drivers, joining his Hendrick teammates in Kyle Larson, Chase Elliott, and William Byron. However, Andrews explained in a statement from HMS that Bowman has made the most growth outside of his stock car.
“It’s been a great experience to watch Alex come up through our program and mature not only as a driver but also as an individual,” Andrews said. “I think the biggest thing that’s been great to watch with Alex is his confidence in himself and his race team. He and (crew chief) Greg Ives have done a great job. They have a great relationship – a lot of confidence in each other – and I think that is something that has really improved with him through his time here at Hendrick Motorsports.”
Rick Hendrick Did Not Want Bowman to Reach Free Agency
Following Bowman’s win at Dover International Speedway, team owner Rick Hendrick met with media members to discuss a wide variety of topics. However, Bowman’s contract became the biggest topic on hand. Media members asked if the driver of the No. 48 would be back with HMS for future seasons, and Hendrick quickly responded by saying that contract discussions were taking place.
“We’ve already started. It should be done any time,” Hendrick said about the contract talks. “We want Alex there. He wants to be there. It’s kind of at this point just a formality.” Hendrick confirmed at the time that this new deal would be for multiple years.
One month later, HMS proved Hendrick’s words to be true. The team announced a multi-year extension for Bowman, locking him up through the 2023 season and keeping him as an integral member of a very talented stable of drivers.
With his deal in place, Bowman will continue pursuing wins as he prepares for the playoffs. He will remain one of the top contenders for top-five finishes, as well as the Bill France Cup, as the end of the regular season approaches. His first goal will be taking the checkered flag in the Ally 400 on Sunday, June 20.