DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – This Sunday’s Daytona 500 will be Alex Bowman’s third start at Daytona International Speedway behind the wheel of the No. 88 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1.
He’ll have started all three races on the front row.
Sunday at Daytona, Bowman earned the outside pole as part of a Hendrick Motorsports front row sweep in qualifying. William Byron became the second-youngest Daytona 500 pole winner in history, one year after Bowman captured the pole for “The Great American Race” last season.
“You always want one spot more, and it would be cool to have another Daytona 500 pole, but it's cool to see William get that,” Bowman said. “I'm proud of the 24 team as well as the 88 team and just really focused on learning what I can in the next week and being the most prepared I can for the 500.”
Together, Byron and Bowman form the youngest front row in Daytona 500 history with a combined age of 46.
It marks the sixth time Hendrick Motorsports has earned a front row sweep in Daytona 500 qualifying – and the record fifth consecutive year in which the organization has earned the pole for the race.
“We put a lot of emphasis on trying to sit on the pole and go for the front row,” Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick said. “So, I think we've got the speed.”
That was certainly on display Sunday, as Byron, Bowman, Jimmie Johnson and Chase Elliott were in a row atop the board in first, second, third and fourth, respectively.
It’s the first time a team has qualified one-two-three-four in Daytona 500 history.
“It's so cool to be part of,” Bowman said. “That's really neat and just shows how well everybody is working together. To be locked into that front row barring a disaster in the Duel is really neat and kind of lets us focus on getting our car driving really well.”