The red and black No. 88 Chevrolet Camaro of Alex Bowman already looks menacing, but it’s even more scary to the competition as Bowman has proven to be the class of the field all weekend at Auto Club Speedway.
Bowman, who started third, took 11 laps to get around polesitter Clint Bowyer for the lead, but once Bowman assumed the lead, he didn’t look back.
The driver of the No. 88 led 44 laps en route to the Stage 1 win. This marks Bowman’s first Stage win of the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series season, and along with it comes one Playoff Point as well as 10 regular season championship standings.
Ryan Blaney finished the Stage in second in the No. 12 Body Armor Kobe Bryant tribute car.
Jimmie Johnson, who was honored with a pre-race five-wide tribute, was third in Stage 1.
Aric Almirola and Kurt Busch rounded out the top-five from the opening Stage of the race.
Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano, Matt DiBenedetto, Chase Elliott and Kyle Busch capped off the top-10 in the running order in Stage 1 and also scored Stage points.
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. utilized a contrarian pit strategy to lead six laps during a green-flag pit sequence, but the call led Stenhouse to finish the Stage a lap down in 23rd.
Kyle Larson is three laps off the pace, when a bump draft from Denny Hamlin sent him into the wall hard. Larson is 32nd and it appears his shot at victory is over.
Toby is the Founder, Editor and go-to man for TobyChristie.com. He is also the co-host of The Final Lap Weekly Podcast. Additionally, Toby is a NMPA (National Motorsports Press Association) award winning writer, and has followed NASCAR as a fan since 1993.