Chase Elliott Finishes Third at Martinsville
Chase Elliott piloted the No. 24 SunEnergy1 Chevrolet SS to a third-place finish at Martinsville Speedway, including a win in Stage 2 of the race.
With rain washing out qualifying on Friday, Elliott started from the outside pole in his No. 24 Chevrolet for the 500-mile short-track race at Martinsville. Winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race the day prior, Elliott took that confidence and knowledge into Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race.
Stage 1 of the race found the 21-year-old racer challenged with the handling of the car at the start, but he remained in the top ten and the team quickly adjusted the handling during a pit stop on Lap 105. The changes proved beneficial and the No. 24 team finished Stage 1 in fifth place.
Crew chief Alan Gustafson opted not to pit prior to the start of Stage 2 and Elliott benefited from the call, starting second in Stage 2. The Dawsonville, Georgia, native battled for the lead during Stage 2, but then settled into second position for most of the 130-lap segment. On the final lap of the segment, Elliott passed the leader and took the checkered flag to win Stage 2 and earn a playoff point.
Moving to the final stage, Elliott knew that a long run would work best for his SunEnergy1 Chevrolet, as it was handling well in the turns over the long haul. Running up front proved advantageous as Elliott avoided a multitude of cautions. The driver of the No. 24 raced solidly in the top five during the final stage. He was in third position with 20 laps to go and solidly held on to that position for the finish.
The No. 24 team remains second in overall standings, but now sits only four points behind the leader.
Start / Finish: 2nd / 3rd
Points Earned: 33
Points Standing / Total: 2nd / 264 points
Next Race: April 9, Texas 500, Texas Motor Speedway
How to Watch or Listen: 1:30 p.m. ET on FOX, PRN, SiriusXM Channel 90