James Gilbert | Getty Images
James Gilbert | Getty Images

Rick Hendrick: Alex Bowman expected to return in 2022

Team owner Rick Hendrick said Sunday that negotiations with Alex Bowman are underway for a contract extension, calling the situation “a formality” that he would return to the No. 48 Chevrolet next season with a multiyear contract in place.

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“We’ve already started. It should be done any time,” Hendrick said after his organization enjoyed a banner day in Sunday’s Drydene 400. “We want Alex there. He wants to be there. It’s kind of at this point just a formality.”

Bowman led a 1-2-3-4 sweep for Hendrick Motorsports at Dover International Speedway, securing his second NASCAR Cup Series win of the season. The last announcement regarding Bowman’s contract status came exactly one year ago Sunday, when he signed a one-year extension to stay with the organization through the end of the 2021 season.

The core of Bowman’s former No. 88 team remained intact moving into this season, but he adopted a new car number in No. 48 as the successor to seven-time series champion Jimmie Johnson. Sunday, he led 98 of the 400 laps and became only the Cup Series’ second multi-race winner this year, joining three-time victor Martin Truex Jr. in that select group.

“Just being at Hendrick Motorsports is obviously where I want to be,” said Bowman, who has four victories in his Cup Series career — all in Hendrick equipment. “I want to continue to work with Ally and drive the 48 car. Like he said, we’ve been working on it. I think I want to be there; they want me to drive their race car. It’s cool to have a guy like Rick Hendrick say he wants you to continue driving his race car. It means a lot to me. Just a really special place to be. Appreciative for the opportunity.”