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      Rick Hendrick praises Alex Bowman’s effort to reach Round of 12

      © Phil Cavali Photography

      Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick said he was proud of Alex Bowman’s second-place finish in Sunday’s Bank of America ROVAL 400, the No. 88 driver overcoming a back-of-the-field start, an early spin and an illness to jump above the cutoff line and secure a berth in the NASCAR Playoffs’ Round of 12.

      “He just refused to lose,” Hendrick said. “When you think about where he came from and finished second, that was unbelievable. Proud of him.

      “I think coming away from this race, he’s going to have a lot of confidence going into Dover because I kept hearing the guys tell him where he was, two points ahead, one point behind, three points, got to pass this guy, you’ve got to pass that guy. On this track, that is the most treacherous track that I’ve seen these cars run on. If you make a mistake, you’re in big trouble. I’m real proud of his performance.”

      Bowman heads into the Round of 12 with confidence after his performance in Charlotte, but also based on his results from earlier in the season. He racked up runner-up finishes at the three tracks — Dover International Speedway, Talladega Superspeedway and Kansas Speedway — that make up the Round of 12. His 143 points over those three events is second-best in the playoff field, trailing only teammate Chase Elliott (156).

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