WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. – Alex Bowman will take to the grid from the second position in the No. 17 Chevrolet Camaro when the NASCAR Xfinity Series race begins at Watkins Glen International on Saturday afternoon.

Bowman’s lap of 124.721 mph puts him on the front row. The 30-year-old driver is making his first start in the Xfinity Series since last year’s runner-up finish in the No. 17 Chevy at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course. He has one victory in the series from a 2017 start at Charlotte Motor Speedway.  

Fast facts, tune-in info to know for Watkins Glen

In practice, Bowman placed fourth on the board in the 20-minute session with a best lap of 121.748 mph. He also posted the third-best five-lap consecutive average and the fourth-best 10-lap consecutive average.

Bowman is the last of the four NASCAR Cup Series regulars for Hendrick Motorsports to drive the team’s Xfinity entry in 2023. Thus far, the No. 17 entry has come oh-so-close to victory lane. William Byron ran to a runner-up finish at Circuit of The Americas in March, Kyle Larson finished third at Sonoma Raceway in June and Chase Elliott came home third at Pocono Raceway in July. Larson is set to make the fifth and final start for the No. 17 entry next month at Darlington Raceway.

The No. 17 car number carries a rich history and special significance to the organization. NASCAR Hall of Famer Darrell Waltrip drove it to nine Cup Series wins for the team from 1987 to 1990, including in the 1989 DAYTONA 500. The car number was also driven by Ricky Hendrick in various races, including in the NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series in 2000 and 2001. This year, the paint scheme is again based on the No. 17 truck driven by Hendrick during his 2001 rookie season.

RELATED: Look back at all of the Xfinity wins for Hendrick Motorsports

In its history, Hendrick Motorsports has won one Xfinity Series championship and earned 26 wins in the series. The organization's four races in 2022 marked its first action in the series since 2009 when Tony Stewart took home the checkered flag at Daytona International Speedway. In its seven combined races in the series in 2022 and 2023, the No. 17 team has three poles, three runner-up finishes, six top-fives and 134 laps led.

Watch Bowman take on Watkins Glen in the No. 17 Chevrolet at 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, Aug. 19, with coverage on USA Network, NBC Sports App, MRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90)