Hendrick Motorsports took care of business before the Daytona 500 and signed Alex Bowman to a multi-year contract extension. Now, the driver of the No. 48 has weighed in and explained why it was a relief to get this done before the start of the season.
The deal in question was announced on February 15. Hendrick Motorsports said that Ally Financial had signed a deal that will keep it as the primary sponsor of the No. 48 through the 2028 season. Additionally, HMS said that Bowman had signed a three-year deal of his own, which will keep him in the No. 48 through the 2026 season.
“So glad it’s signed and done before the season started and we can get that out of the way and just focus on going and winning races,” Bowman told media members at Daytona International Speedway. “The constant questions about it every week definitely are not my favorite thing, so glad to have it done and over with and excited for what the future holds.”
The 4-Driver Lineup Will Remain Intact
The constant questions Bowman referenced were those that he faced throughout the 2022 Cup Series season and into the offseason. His three teammates — Kyle Larson, William Byron, and Chase Elliott — had all signed deals, which left him as the only one remaining.
Larson and Hendrick Motorsports agreed to a three-year extension during the 2022 Cup Series playoffs. This deal ensured that the 2021 champion would remain in the No. 5 through the 2026 season and that HendrickCars.com would remain as his primary partner.
Byron’s deal was announced ahead of Throwback Weekend in May 2022. This was a multi-year extension that ensured he would continue suiting up for HMS through at least the 2025 season.
Elliott’s deal, which was announced prior to the 2022 Daytona 500, was the largest of them all. This five-year extension ensured that the 2020 Cup Series champion would remain in the No. 9 through the 2027 season.
Now, Bowman is secure through the 2026 season, which means that he can focus solely on his job instead of answering questions about his future with Hendrick Motorsports. He can also continue working with his teammates as they all attempt to deliver even more wins and championships.
“I think just honestly having all four of us solid at Hendrick Motorsport Motorsports over the next however many years is a good thing,” Larson told media members at Daytona. “I’m happy to have Alex with the team for at least three years. I really enjoy Alex. I feel like we’re great friends. We have a lot in common with the dirt racing stuff. He’s who I’m probably closest with because of that connection through dirt racing.
“So, I’m glad to have him back. We work out together in the mornings when I’m in town. He’s who I spend the most time with out of the rest of my teammates, so yeah, happy that we’re both at Hendrick Motorsports for the next however many years.”
Wins Remain Bowman’s Focus Entering 2023
Hendrick Motorsports took care of the contract during the offseason, which set Bowman up to focus on pursuing wins. This is something that he has done several times since joining Hendrick Motorsports.
Bowman has seven career Cup Series wins — two in the No. 88 and five in the No. 48. This includes a career-high of four during the final season of the Gen 6 era.
The Arizona native only started 31 races in 2022 due to a concussion, but he showed that he can still contend for wins after moving over the Next Gen era of NASCAR. He still posted four top-five finishes and 12 top-10s while working with Greg Ives, and now he will move forward with Blake Harris as his crew chief.
“Working with Blake has been really cool,” Bowman said. “He’s all-in on everything. Excited to get kind of normal races going and see how it goes. Just getting communication rolling has been important to us. It was good to get reps in [at the Clash].
“Obviously, that’s a unique event but to have it go well and the communication be going well was really important. We made the right adjustments at the halfway break and we were really strong for the second half of the race. Having that communication lead to the right adjustments was good and a good confidence-builder going forward.”