Alex Bowman will not compete in Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL due to continued concussion symptoms. He’s the 2nd driver today alone to announce he’s missing Sundays race and 3rd full-time driver overall out.
Bowman, driver of the No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for Hendrick Motorsports, was evaluated by physicians this afternoon in Charlotte. The ROVAL will mark the second consecutive event he will miss due to the injury, which was suffered in a Sept. 25 accident at Texas Motor Speedway.
“Alex’s health is our first priority,” said Jeff Andrews, president and general manager of Hendrick Motorsports. “We’re focused on supporting his recovery and seeing him back in his race car when the time is right. Alex has a long career ahead of him, so we will invest the necessary time and take our guidance from medical experts. We’re putting no pressure on him to return before he’s 100% ready.”
Noah Gragson, 24, will again be the substitute driver for Bowman. The Las Vegas native qualified seventh and finished 19th in the No. 48 Chevrolet on Sunday at Talladega Superspeedway.
Charlotte will be Gragson’s first career road course start at the Cup level. He has finished in the top 10 in 17 of his 20 NASCAR Xfinity Series road races, including all three ROVAL appearances.
Rick Hendrick said last Sunday that he talked with Bowman last week and that he was on a roller coaster of symptoms.
“After the race, he said he didn’t feel good,” he said of Bowman. “But it was Monday morning. I didn’t know anything because he stayed in the car. Then Monday morning he didn’t feel well. They started working with him Tuesday. Wednesday was good. He felt much better. Then Thursday he backed up, he didn’t feel good, so he went to see the doctor.
“I think hopefully he’ll be back next week. I think he will. He’s feeling good today and yesterday. I guess he’ll go back and get evaluated here midweek.”
By missing Sundays race, Bowman is now eliminated from the playoffs as a result. Now the focus can fully turn to his health which is why I don’t necessarily see this as a couple weeks nuisance anymore. With 4 races remaining in the season after, it may be best he sits the rest of 2022 out.