CONCORD, N.C. - There are few things that rival Talladega Superspeedway in the NASCAR Cup Series. From the sheer steepness of the banking to the extremely passionate fanbase, the venue carries special meaning to both teams and drivers. Sunday afternoon will see Hendrick Motorsports go for a 15th victory at the famed 2.66-mile circuit. 

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The winning ways at Talladega began with Ken Schrader in 1988 as the Fenton, Missouri, native drive to victory lane with his teammate Geoff Bodine right behind him in second. The result was the first time in track history that any team had swept the top two spots. With six other drivers joining Schrader as track winners from the team, Hendrick Motorsports holds the record for the most competitors to win a race at Talladega from a single team in Cup Series history.    

Throughout the years, many notable moments in Cup Series history have taken place at the legendary facility with Hendrick Motorsports at the forefront. In the spring race of 2000, current vice chairman Jeff Gordon became the fastest driver to reach 50 Cup Series wins in only his 232nd start. In 2007, Gordon passed Dale Earnhardt on the all-time Cup Series wins list with his 77th victory. The thrilling three-wide finish of the 2011 spring race saw Jimmie Johnson take home the checkered flag with margin of victory of .002 seconds, the closest finish ever at the track and tied for the closest finish in Cup Series history.  

The most recent triumph for the team came in 2022’s playoff race where Chase Elliott brought home his second victory at Talladega. The victory was one of three triumphs on drafting tracks in 2022 for the organization as Elliott and Byron each won a race at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

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One driver that seems primed for success on the high banks of Talladega is Alex Bowman. Through two races on drafting-style tracks this season, he has yet to finish outside the top 15, highlighted by a pole position and top-five finish at the season opening DAYTONA 500. At the Alabama venue, all four of his top 10s have come in the past spring events. The best of those results was a runner-up finish to Elliott in 2019. Bowman's new crew chief Blake Harris fared very well at 'Dega last year. Working with the No. 34 team, Harris guided Michael McDowell to top 10s in both races there last year and he was one of four drivers to finish in the top 10 in the spring and fall.

"Our team always brings really fast race cars," Bowman said. "I have just figured out every way to get caught up in something at superspeedways, so hopefully this weekend we can keep our car clean and contend for a win. Blake’s (Harris, crew chief) guy did pretty good here last year and I think we have a good foundation, so I am optimistic about what we can accomplish."

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One underappreciated part of racing on tracks like Talladega is how the drivers and manufacturers work together. Unlike short-tracks and 1.5-mile circuits, teams run in tight packs to gain speed. Often times, you will see a fleet from the some manufacturer pit together so that they can immediate form up coming out of the pits. It’s an interesting piece of strategy, one that does not go unnoticed for Rudy Fugle, crew chief for the No. 24 Liberty University Chevrolet. 

“Our cars will be fast," Fugle told SiriusXM NASCAR Radio earlier this week. "We’re working on how we’re going to work together as an organization, as a manufacturer. Hopefully we can do that and make good decisions about how and when we pit. I think the Chevy contingent can do a good job working together and upset the Fords when it comes to working together."

While 2022’s spring race did not end with a member of the Hendrick Motorsports team in victory lane, the performance from all four drivers was one of the most strongest in recent memory. The team paced the field for 37% of the total laps (70 of 188) with Byron leading the most (38) of any driver in the race. Kyle Larson proved to be right in his tire tracks as he held the point for 32 laps in the race and earned his best drafting track finish (fourth). In fact, the team ran 44% of their laps inside the top five and 72% of their laps inside the top-10 positions.

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Catch all four drivers from Hendrick Motorsports in action this Sunday, April 23, at 3 p.m. ET on FOX, MRN Radio, and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90).