Chase Elliott Likely in Must-Win Position Heading Into Talladega

Photo by Rainier Ehrhardt/NASCAR via Getty Images

By Summer Bedgood, Managing Editor

KANSAS CITY, Kan. – For a while during the Hollywood Casino 400 on Sunday, it looked as though Chase Elliott may finally be able to pull through for his first career Sprint Cup Series victory, clinching a spot in the Round of 8.

Instead, he is very likely going to have to win next weekend at Talladega Superspeedway to keep his Chase hopes alive.

Elliott finished 31st after having to make an unscheduled pit stop due to a tire rub 175 laps into the race. His car handled poorly for several laps thereafter, as the No. 24 car got into the wall multiple times, and finally came to a head with around 20 laps remaining.

Elliott slowed dramatically on the backstretch and barely made it back to pit road. While he was able to complete the race, he was three laps down at the checkered flag.

“We really don’t know,” said Elliott. “I don’t know if we got the left rear getting up on the race track, or something and it got into the fender and cut it down. I don’t know what to do man, we were trying as hard as we can. We had such a good car today again, and….I don’t know what to do.  Just keep after it and try to move on.”

Elliott is 25 points behind eighth place, the cutoff point after this coming weekend’s race at Talladega Superspeedway.

“I just will go there, and race our hearts out and try to win I guess,” said Elliott. “That’s about all we can do I guess. We have something to be proud of in the way we have been running. There are just some things we can’t control. I don’t know how to fix that stuff, but I appreciate so hard. These guys deserve better on this SunEnergy1/ NAPA team.  We are bummed, but what do you do. You just have to move on.”

Elliott’s only career NSCS start at Talladega came earlier this season where he won the pole and finished fifth.

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