When Alex Bowman is introduced before November’s Cup race at ISM Raceway outside Phoenix, it should be reinforced with some bragging rights.
“Now introducing, the first Arizona native to win a NASCAR Cup Series race: Alex Bowman!”
Yes, Bowman, a native of Tucson, Arizona, won Sunday’s race at Chicagoland Speedway and became the first native driver of the “Grand Canyon State” to win a Cup Series race.
It comes three years after Bowman nearly did so on his own turf. As a substitute driver for the injured Dale Earnhardt Jr., Bowman claimed the pole for the 2016 playoff race at ISM Raceway. He then led 194 laps before an incident on a late restart relegated him to a sixth-place finish.
Bowman’s achievement on Sunday makes Arizona the 34th state to produce a Cup Series winner since its inaugural race in 1949.
Which states have produced the most winners in the last 70 years?
Here are the top five according to Racing Insights:
State Number of Winning Drivers
North Carolina 28
New York 11
Now with 34 states having produced winners at NASCAR’s premier level, that leaves 16 that haven’t been that fortunate.
Here are those states:
Louisiana (the only state in the Southeast to not produce a winner)