Skip to content

Elliott Maintains Top-10 Points Position after Phoenix

#9: Chase Elliott, Hendrick Motorsports, Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet Camaro
  • Chase Elliott and No. 9 Kelley Blue Book team qualified third for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Phoenix Raceway
  • The 28-year-old driver earned valuable stage points, finishing fifth in stage one and seventh in stage two
  • A slew of cautions in the final stage prompted multiple strategies among teams. Elliott restarted 17th after the final caution of the race and ultimately finished the race in the 19th position
  • Elliott and the No. 9 team leave Phoenix ninth in the Cup Series points standings

After posting the seventh fastest lap in Friday afternoon’s NASCAR Cup Series practice session at Phoenix Raceway, Chase Elliott backed that up with a third-place qualifying lap on Saturday. The 28-year-old driver took the green flag for the 312-lap race from the second row on Sunday afternoon. Elliott was still running inside the top five when the first caution flag of the race waved on lap seven. The early report from the Hendrick Motorsports driver was that his No. 9 Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 was locked down and tight in the back. With the team opting not to pit, Elliott restarted in the fifth position on lap 12 and remained there as the rest of 60-lap first stage went caution free. The fifth-place stage finish garnered six stage points for the Dawsonville, Georgia, native.

#9: Chase Elliott, Hendrick Motorsports, Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet Camaro

Under the stage-ending caution, Elliott relayed to crew chief Alan Gustafson that the Kelley Blue Book Chevy was tight and that it freed up as the run went on. The crew opted for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment during a fast pit stop which gained Elliott a spot on pit road. He lined up fourth to start the second stage on lap 69. Elliott raced three-wide once the field went back to green, taking over the third position on lap 70. He held strong, maintaining his top-three running position through a long green-flag run. The field started making green-flag pit stops on lap 115, with Elliott bringing the Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet to pit road on lap 117 for four tires and fuel. With the field stretched out, Elliott was bogged down in traffic following his stop, making it harder to gain track position. Still, he managed to score a top-10 finish in the second stage, taking the green-and-white checkered flag in the seventh spot. The result added four more stage points to his total. 

#9: Chase Elliott, Hendrick Motorsports, Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet Camaro and #8: Kyle Busch, Richard Childress Racing, zone Chevrolet Camaro

During the stage break, Elliott brought the Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet to pit road for four tires and fuel. The pit crew knocked out another fast stop, gaining the 2020 Cup Series champion three spots. Elliott took the green flag for the final stage from the fourth position on lap 194 and was scored in fifth place when the caution came out just two laps later. Elliott kept his Chevrolet on the track under the yellow flag. He lined up fifth for the restart on lap 202 and was battling inside the top 10 when the race was slowed once more. Staying out while some drivers deeper in the field visited pit road, Elliott restarted eighth and was scored in ninth at the time of the lap-216 caution. Gustafson called Elliott to pit road with the rest of the leaders for four tires, fuel and a chassis adjustment. With varying pit strategies among teams – some taking only two tires and others opting to stay out – Elliott restarted in the 17th position on lap 220. He managed to advance as high as 16th early in the run but being stuck in dirty air made it difficult for Elliott to continue forward progress. When the checkered flag waved on lap 312, he was scored with a 19th-place finish.

#9: Chase Elliott, Hendrick Motorsports, Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet Camaro and #8: Kyle Busch, Richard Childress Racing, zone Chevrolet Camaro

Elliott and the No. 9 team leave Phoenix Raceway ninth in the Cup Series points standings, just 28 markers behind the leader.

Start / Finish: 3 / 19
Points Standing / Total: 9th / 123 pts. (-26)

Next Race: Sunday, March 17, Bristol Motor Speedway
How to Watch or Listen: 3:30 p.m. ET on FOX, PRN or SiriusXM

NAPA: @NAPARacing
Chase Elliott: @ChaseElliott
Hendrick Motorsports: @TeamHendrick
No. 9 Team: @Hendrick9Team

Hendrick Motorsports View All

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.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *