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Alex Bowman returns to No. 48 car at Charlotte

Jeff Burton, Dale Jarrett and Kyle Petty preview the 2023 Coca-Cola 600 and discuss what makes the track so difficult to navigate.

Alex Bowman will return to the No. 48 Cup car for this weekend’s Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Hendrick Motorsports announced Wednesday.

Bowman suffered a fractured vertebra in an April 25 sprint car crash in Iowa. He missed Cup events at Dover, Kansas, Darlington and the All-Star Race North Wilkesboro.

He drove a Cup car 170 laps Tuesday during a NASCAR-approved medical evaluation test at North Wilkesboro.

NASCAR granted Bowman a waiver to be playoff eligible. He fell from 10th in the standings to 17th after missing the points races at Dover, Kansas and Darlington.

“It’s a boost for all of us to have Alex return to the No. 48 car this weekend at our home track,” said Rick Hendrick, owner of Hendrick Motorsports, in a statement. “He’s still 17th in points, which says a lot about how well the team performed at the start of the year. Alex has worked hard to rehab the injury and come back strong, and I look for him to continue having a championship-caliber season.”