CONCORD, N.C. – While William Byron won Monday night’s DAYTONA 500, Alex Bowman was a close runner-up finisher as the No. 48 Ally Racing entry was just beside his teammate as the caution flag was displayed on the final lap. The finishing result was the fourth time in Hendrick Motorsports' 40-year history that two drivers from the team claimed the top-two spots in "The Great American Race." Bowman's second-place run marked his second straight top-five finish in the DAYTONA 500.

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Although the final result had Bowman agonizingly close to a victory, the Tucson, Arizona, native was proud of Byron following the 500-mile race. Throughout the final stage, the pair worked together to maneuver their way to the front of the field. 

"Proud of William (Byron) and his team - they deserved it there at the end," Bowman said after climbing out of his car. "They did all the right things and I feel like we did too there at the end. Had to go up and block the top lane and that just hurt the middle for a bit. We got the middle back rolling and then they all started crashing."   

In the end, racing is a team sport, and the car plays a massive role in the success of the driver. This is a fact that does not go unnoticed by Bowman as he was extremely proud of his No. 48 Ally Racing group following the strong start to the season. 

"Just proud of everybody on this No. 48 Ally Chevy team," Bowman said about his group. "Super pumped for everybody at Hendrick Motorsports. It’s 40 years to the day since the first Hendrick Motorsports race, so cool to see William in victory lane. A good day for our Ally Camaro, as well.

RELATED: 40 years ago: Hendrick Motorsports’ first start

"Second place in the DAYTONA 500. Hendrick Motorsports 1-2. Great for Chevrolet and everybody involved.  Wish it was one spot better, but still proud of the whole team."

Overall, the weekend was a successful one for Bowman and a positive way to start off the 2024 campaign. While he did not qualify on the front row, the No. 48 entry’s balance and handling were on full display during Thursday's duel race and Monday’s main event. In the 150-mile qualifying race, Bowman finished third. He would back that up with a fourth-place result and valuable stage points in the opening segment of the DAYTONA 500. The 30-year-old driver is currently scored second in the points standings and is just four points behind Byron.

Scenes from the 2024 DAYTONA 500

Moving to Atlanta Motor Speedway this weekend, the No. 48 Ally Racing team will aim to finish one spot better on track and continue this positive momentum. Since the 1.54-mile facility was reprofiled and reconfigured to a drafting track, Bowman has one top-10 finish in four starts. Under crew chief Blake Harris, the team is looking to duplicate and even better its fast start from the 2023 season.

"The beginning of the year is almost built for Alex," Harris said during a Tuesday night appearance on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. "If you look at where he is at statistically, some of the wins that he has and some of the places that he runs the best, we’ve got a lot of those sprinkled in. He’s phenomenal at COTA (Circuit of The Americas). He’s got a win at Vegas. We ran 1-2-3 there last spring with Hendrick Motorsports cars and had a really good run before we ended up crashing there in the fall.

"We know where our strengths are. We’ve got a handful of those tracks early in the season that I expect to be really good to us."

The group will be back on track this weekend in Atlanta for the second race of the NASCAR Cup Series season. Tune in to catch the race on Sunday, Feb. 25, at 3 p.m. ET with coverage available on FOX, PRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90).