Alex Bowman might want to choose his words a little more carefully next time.
Of course its understandable that Bowman, who was announced as Dale Earnhardt Jr’s replacement late last season, would take awhile to get comfortable in his new role, but he has already made arguably the worst mistake he could possibly make at a time like this. In fact, it could be bad enough to sour fans on Bowman before he even takes his first regular season lap in 2018.
Unfortunately for Bowman, he made the mistake of taking an accidental shot at Dale Earnhardt Jr during an interview and while it seemed innocent enough of a statement, it still didn’t sound like a very nice thing to say about the guy you just replaced. Not only that, it wasn’t really the kind of statement that is going to get JR Nation fans to rally behind the young star
“Not that Dale Jr.’s not down to earth, but it’s hard for me to look at him and relate to him,” Bowman said during NASCAR Media day,. ““He’s so popular. Everywhere he goes, he’s followed by a huge crowd of people. “I’m a regular, down-to-earth guy, and I’m pretty relatable to the average NASCAR fans,” he continued. “I work on a lot of street car and racecar stuff myself, I’m not afraid to get my hands dirty, and I’m very appreciative of this opportunity. So hopefully they can relate to me and become fans.”
Again, probably not that bad compared to what he could have said, but still not the best way for Bowman to step into his new role with Hendrick Motorsports. In the end, Bowman is going to need the ultimate balance of on track results and fan support in order to be considered the rightful success to The Earnhardt throne, If he fails to do those two things however, he may end up being labeled as an over hyped driver that was moved up too quickly.