CONCORD, N.C.  – Alex Bowman kept the momentum going at Circuit of The Americas (COTA) with a second consecutive fourth-place finish in the 2024 NASCAR Cup Series season. 

After finishing in the top five at Bristol Motor Speedway, Bowman came to his best track by average finish (4.25) and posted back-to-back top-five results for the first time since 2020 (playoff races at Kansas Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway). 

RELATED: Recap the day for Bowman at COTA

"These last two weeks have been a step in the right direction and I think we have to keep chipping away at it," Bowman said.

Starting 17th in the No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, Bowman fought a loose-handling race car in the opening stage. Crew chief Blake Harris had his driver short-pit the stage to get track position for stage two. Bowman spent most of the stage in the top 10 and short-pitted the stage in a strategy play for track position ahead of the final segment. 

Restarting fifth on lap 34, the 30-year-old drove up to fourth and pitted from that position on lap 44 – the first among the top five to do so. Harris' call helped Bowman gain some track position as he got up to second behind teammate William Byron when the green-flag cycle of stops was complete. Late in the run, he lost two spots to cars with fresher tires but still earned his third straight top-five finish at the Austin, Texas, venue. 

"I probably just got stuck out in traffic after our last pit stop," Bowman said. "It was a bad spot that I had to run too hard on low air and beat the rear tires up. I kind of inched in on William (Byron) for a bit, but then the rear tires just went away.

"We had a good Ally Camaro. We just needed to hold on to rear grip longer. … We had a good day, it just sucks to come up a couple short again."

PHOTOS: All the scenes from Circuit of The Americas

Team vice chairman Jeff Gordon felt Bowman's comfort at the 20-turn, 3.41-mile track paid great dividends.

"Alex (Bowman) is one of those guys where the bigger the challenge, it seems, the better he does," Gordon said. "I'm going to leave here and try to find more ways to really challenge him.

"He's a great race car driver. They didn't qualify well, but they had a good car, it seemed like all weekend. His confidence in the car, especially once they dropped the green flag, showed. Blake (Harris, crew chief) called a good race."

The "start of the season has been a bit up-and-down for Bowman and the No. 48 team. Following a runner-up finish to Byron in the 2024 DAYTONA 500, he finished outside the top 15 in the next three races (at Atlanta Motor Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Phoenix Raceway. With his two consecutive top-five finishes at Bristol and COTA, Bowman is tied for the series lead in top fives (three) and has the fifth-best average finish (12.50) among series regulars. 

"When he gets on a roll, he gets his confidence up; there's no telling what they're capable of doing," Gordon said. I'm really happy for them—two top fives in a row. They'd had a couple of rough weeks, so they needed this."

Next up for Bowman and the No. 48 is Richmond Raceway. The Tucson, Arizona, native won the spring race in 2021 with a pass on Denny Hamlin with 10 laps to go. He has four top-10 finishes in his last seven races at the 0.75-mile track. Bowman will be looking to earn his third straight top-five finish this weekend for the first time since the spring of 2019 – a stretch that saw him finish second at Talladega Superspeedway, Dover Motor Speedway and Kansas. 

Check out all of Alex Bowman's wins at Hendrick Motorsports

Tune in to watch Bowman and the No. 48 at Richmond on Sunday, March 31, at 7 p.m. ET on FOX, MRN Radio and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90).