Alex Bowman and the No. 23 Dr Pepper Toyota Camry team finished 13th at Daytona International Speedway on Sunday afternoon. The result marked the best Sprint Cup Series finish in the Sunoco rookie contender's career, as well as the best finish for BK Racing since October 2012.
In a race weekend where rain served as the recurring theme, competitors in the Sprint Cup Series had an abbreviated amount of track time as rain limited practice time, abbreviated qualifying, and even postponed the traditional Saturday night race to Sunday afternoon. As a result, Bowman started near the back of the pack as competitors rolled off per the rules of the Sprint Cup Series rulebook. Not letting anything or anyone slow his role, Bowman missed the first large multi-car accident and climbed inside the top 20 within 30 laps.
Racing in what seemed to be the right place at the right time, Bowman had dropped to 28th when a 26-car pileup broke out on the backstretch on lap 98. His position gave him enough time to react and receive only minor damage to his Dr Pepper Toyota Camry in an incident that left many cars damaged beyond repair. Bowman visited pit road during the caution period for quick repairs and was able to return to the racetrack for six additional laps of green flag racing. The caution flag was once again displayed on lap 110, as the skies opened and soaked the 2.5-mile Florida superspeedway. NASCAR officials made the decision to call the race nearly 50 laps before it's scheduled distance, allowing Bowman and his Dr Pepper team to officially secure the 13th-place finishing position.
"Racing at Daytona International Speedway always includes luck, and fortunately, we had luck on our side today" commented Bowman. "I'm so proud of the result of our Dr Pepper Toyota Camry team. To have my career-best Sprint Cup finish to date at a track with as much history as Daytona is really cool. There were two huge accidents today, and my spotter did a great job keeping me out of both of them. When we did get minor damage in the second 'big one,' my team did a great job making repairs and getting us back on the track. We knew that we were racing the rain today, which added a bit more strategy to the race as we weren't sure exactly when it would arrive. I had a lot of fun out there today, and I can't thank my crew enough for giving me the equipment and guidance I needed to get a solid finish."
BK Racing PR