Alex Bowman is the big man on the Hendrick Motorsports’ campus, at least for this week, following his win Sunday at Auto Club Speedway.
The win also places him at No. 1 on this week’s edition of the NBC Sports Power Rankings. Bowman overthrows Joey Logano, who fell to a four-way tie for sixth.
Thirteen drivers earned votes this week.
Here’s this week’s power rankings:
1. Alex Bowman (38 points out of 40): Dominated Auto Club 400 from start to finish. Was fast in practice and carried it through the race. Last week: 10th
2. Ryan Blaney (32 points): It’s not often someone who has finished outside the top 10 in his last two races is this high in the power rankings, but Blaney’s overall performance through three races is undeniable. The No. 12 team just needs to close the deal. Last week: 3rd
3. Jimmie Johnson (31 points): When you weren’t looking, the seven-time champion posted top-10 finishes in every stage through three races (plus a runner-up in his Daytona 500 qualifying race). Can Johnson carry this momentum to the first race of the season on a flat track? Last week: 9th
4. Kevin Harvick (21 points): Through three races Harvick is the only driver to place in the top 10 in each event. Last week: 2nd
5. Brad Keselowski (20 points): After crashing out of the Daytona 500, Keselowski has posted finishes of seventh and fifth as Team Penske’s strong showing to open the season continues. Last week: unranked
(tie) 6. Chase Elliott (16 points): After winning three stages in the first two races, Elliott finally earned a top-10 finish Sunday when he placed fourth, one of three Chevys in the top five. Last week: 4th
(tie) 6. Kyle Busch (16 points): Finally placed inside the top 10 with his runner-up finish, a result of track position gained on the chaotic final restart of the race. Last week: unranked
(tie) 6. Joey Logano (16 points): Followed up his Las Vegas win with a 12th-place finish. Also placed seventh in Stage 1. Last week: 1st
(tie) 6. Denny Hamlin (16 points): After a less-than-stellar weekend in Las Vegas, the Daytona 500 winner drove his way to a sixth-place finish. Last week: 6th
10. Kurt Busch (9 points): Another driver who earned his first top 10 of the season with his third-place result. Last week: unranked