One of the key empty rides for the 2018 season has been filled. Alex Bowman will drive the Hendrick Motorsports No. 88 Chevrolet SS for the entire 2018 season, after current No. 88 driver Dale Earnhardt retires at the end of the current season.
Past 88 Seat Time
Bowman filled in for 10 dates during the 2016 season when Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was not medically cleared to race after suffering concussion symptoms.
In that season, Bowman made nine Xfinity Series starts for JR Motorsports, recording one pole position, three top-five finishes and seven top-10s. His 10 2016 Cup Series included top-10 results in playoff races at Chicagoland, Kansas and Phoenix. He now has 133 career starts across NASCAR’s three national series, including one in the 2017 Truck Series.
“Ever since I was a kid, racing is all I’ve wanted to do,” Bowman said.
“I’ve had so many people believe in me along the way. My family has sacrificed a lot and always been behind me. I would never have this chance without the support of Dale and everyone involved with the No. 88 team. To be part of Hendrick Motorsports and for Mr. Hendrick to have this confidence in me, it’s just amazing.
As a 21-year-old rookie, Bowman made his NASCAR Cup debut in the 2014 Daytona 500. Over the 2014 and 2015 seasons, he started 71 Cup events while running full-time for BK Racing and Tommy Baldwin Racing.
Simulation Seat Time
Bowman this year, has also been spending a lot of time for Hendrick Motorsports in their simulators, helping the four HMS drivers unload with better setups for each track. This assistance, his success last season subbing for Earnhart, Jr., and obviously the overall talent level he’s shown made him the driver Earnhardt, Jr. wanted to replace him next season.
Bowman will have primary sponsorship from Nationwide for 19 races, and Axalta for 15 races.
“We are thrilled to continue our relationship with Hendrick Motorsports and welcome Alex to the No. 88 Nationwide team,” said Terrance Williams, chief marketing officer at Nationwide. “Rick Hendrick and the No. 88 team have been exceptional partners for the last three years, and we look forward to our joint commitment and engagement with the NASCAR community, both on and off the track.”
Source: Hendrick Motorsports – Alex Bowman to drive No. 88 Nationwide Chevrolet for Hendrick Motorsports in 2018