Chase Elliott: A.J. Allmendinger apologizes for 18-car Dega wreck

Photo by Harold Hinson Photography

 By Yvonne Jones, Staff Writer

TALLADEGA, Ala. – Chase Elliott didn’t blame A.J. Allmendinger for triggering the 18-car wreck at Talladega Superspeedway on Sunday, but Allmendinger told Elliott sorry, anyway.

With the two drivers running near the front in the Geico 500 with 20 laps to go, Allmendinger tried to give the Hendrick Motorsports wheelman a push but the tap caused things to go sideways — literally. Elliott’s No. 24 Chevy turned on its side across traffic on the backstretch and subsequently landed on the hood of Joey Logano’s No. 22 Ford. Allmendinger’s No. 47 Chevy went into the air and settled on its roof.

When Allmendinger emerged from the infield care center, he reached out to Elliott to talk about the incident.

“He just apologized,” Elliott said of the JTG Daugherty driver. “I don’t know that it was really his fault per se. He had a big run and he kind of got to my bumper and just happened to be in a bad spot coming up off the corner and was skewed a little bit to my left rear. And when that happens, it just unloads these cars too much.”

Allmendinger said once he got to the bumper of Elliott, he got loose. Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, Martin Truex Jr., Matt Kenseth, Trevor Bayne, Erik Jones and Kurt Busch were also involved in the “Big One,” a phrase used to describe massive wrecks that usually happen in restrictor-plate races.

“I barely tapped him,” Allmendinger insisted. “And then I tried to get off him but at that point it was too late. It was just one of those things battling for the lead. The plan kind of went. We waited at the back and started moving forward.

“I hated that happened, but it’s Talladega. I’m not a big fan of it, but if you’re up front and you’ve got a chance to go for it, racing happens I guess, here.”



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