- Chase Elliott qualified 21st for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway.
- After finishing the first two stages in 13th, Elliott powered his way to the lead in the final stage and remained out front for five laps. He ultimately ended the race in seventh.
- It was the third top-10 finish of the season for Elliott, who missed six races due to a fractured tibia. He now has a streak of five consecutive finishes of 12th or better.
- Elliott’s seventh-place result at Kansas marked the ninth top-10 finish in 15 career Cup Series starts for the 27-year-old driver on the 1.5-mile track.
Chase Elliott rolled off the grid in the 21st position for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Kansas Speedway. The No. 9 UniFirst Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 fired off on the tight side, which Elliott reported to his team during the first caution of the race on lap six. Opting not to come to pit road, Elliott restarted 24th and was running in 25th when green-flag pit stops ensued around lap 35. Crew chief Alan Gustafson called Elliott to pit road for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment to help the UniFirst Chevrolet’s handling on lap 39. Back out on the track, the driver of the No. 9 started gaining positions. He was up to 20th on lap 52 and methodically continued his climb from there. When the green-and-white checkered flag waved to end stage one on lap 80, he was scored in 13th.
Under the stage-ending caution, Elliott brought his Chevrolet to pit road for four tires and fuel. A fast pit stop by the No. 9 UniFirst team gained Elliott two spots on pit road and he lined up 11th to start the second stage. Taking the green flag in the outside lane, the 27-year-old driver maneuvered his way inside the top 10 for the first time of the race and was running in seventh when an on-track incident brought out the caution on lap 109. Gustafson called Elliott to pit road for a four-tire stop under the yellow. An issue with the left rear made for a longer amount of time on pit road for the team. Mired back in 19th, Elliott was undeterred by the loss of track position. He powered his way to 11th before the next caution on lap 139. After a fast stop for four fresh tires and fuel, Elliott restarted in the eighth spot and made his way to fifth prior to the yellow flag waving with just 17 laps remaining in stage two. The Dawsonville, Georgia, native restarted from the outside of the third row on lap 153. Just five laps later, an incident brought out the caution. Elliott made his way to pit road for fresh tires and fuel. With some cars opting to stay out, he lined up in 20th for the restart with only three laps remaining in the stage.
Once the green flag waved, he made quick work of the cars ahead of him and was running in 13th when the yellow flag was displayed for another on-track incident. The stage ultimately ended under the caution, with Elliott scored with a 13th-place result.
Staying out under the stage break, Elliott took the green flag for the final stage from the fourth position on lap 170. He gained one spot before the caution came out on lap 177. He restarted in third on lap 183 and found his way to the lead on lap 187. When the race was slowed for a yellow flag on lap 191, Elliott brought the UniFirst Chevrolet to the attention of his pit crew for fuel and a fresh set of tires. Lining up seventh for the lap-195 restart. Elliott advanced his position to third but faded back to 11th as the run went on. During the next caution, the team made its final pit stop of the race for four tires and fuel. Elliott fired off from 13th on the lap-211 restart and was scored in 12th when a caution came out on lap 216. When the race went back to green on lap 220, he worked his way to seventh and reported to the team that his Chevrolet had gotten tighter. The team discovered it was due to some damage to the right front that was sustained while Elliott had been battling for position. Despite the tough-handling condition, he continued to race inside the top 10 and battled for sixth in the closing laps before taking the checkered flag in the seventh position.
The seventh-place result was the third top-10 finish of the season for Elliott, who missed six races for a fractured tibia. It was also his fifth straight top-12 finish. The Hendrick Motorsports driver now has nine top-10 Cup Series finishes at Kansas Speedway.
“We didn’t really show it with the results, but I was excited about how the day went for our No. 9 UniFirst Chevy team. We had a couple of high spots. Got the lead there when we were racing with Kyle (Larson). That’s better than normal for me, so we’ll just try to build on that and get better.”
Start / Finish: 21 / 7
Points Standing / Total: 29th / 178 pts. (-226)
Next Race: Sunday, May 14, Darlington Raceway, Darlington, S.C.
How to Watch or Listen: 3:00 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM
Founded by Rick Hendrick in 1984, Hendrick Motorsports is the winningest team in NASCAR Cup Series history. At the sport’s premier level, the organization holds the all-time records in every major statistical category, including championships (14), points-paying race victories (291) and laps led (over 77,000). Headquartered in Concord, North Carolina, the team fields four full-time entries in the NASCAR Cup Series, including the No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 driven by 2020 champion Chase Elliott.