Alex Bowman has been medically cleared to return to racing and will do so in next weekend’s season finale at Phoenix Raceway, Bowman and Hendrick Motorsports announced Friday morning.
Bowman has been out since suffering a concussion in a crash Sept. 25 at Texas Motor Speedway. This weekend’s race at Martinsville Speedway will mark the fifth consecutive race he’s missed because of the injury.
The Phoenix finale will mark the final race as crew chief of the No. 48 team for Greg Ives.
“Greg and I started something there in 2016 that we never got to finish, so hopefully we can get the job done,” Bowman said on social media, referring to his first race at Phoenix with team in 2016 in place of an injured Dale Earnhardt Jr. “To have one final race with Greg is going to be really special.
“Thank you to Hendrick Motorsports (and) all the doctors that have helped me. It’s been a long road and a lot of work but excited to be back to 100% and be able to get back in a race car. So hope to see you guys out there. We’re gonna finish the season strong and hopefully get one last win for Greg.”
Noah Gragson will drive the No. 48 car this weekend at Martinsville before Bowman gets back in the car next week.
“We’re thrilled Alex is 100% and will have the opportunity to race at his home track,” said Jeff Andrews, president and general manager of Hendrick Motorsports, in a statement. “Throughout this process, he’s been incredibly diligent about following the advice of his doctors and prioritizing his health. All of us look forward to welcoming Alex back and seeing him finish 2022 with his No. 48 teammates.
“Due to the timing (of the medical clearance), everyone agreed it was best to stick with our plan for Martinsville and allow the team to fully prepare for Alex’s return next weekend,” Andrews said. “On behalf of everyone at Hendrick Motorsports, we’re grateful to Noah for stepping in and doing a terrific job under difficult circumstances. He’s a big talent and has been a complete professional.”