Chase Elliott Hopes To Make Mark In Second Ever Sprint Cup Event

Chase Elliott

After coming close in two 2014 races, Chase turns his eye on a Richmond win.

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Chase Elliott took the XFINITY Series by storm last season, winning the championship in his rookie year. His triumph made him the youngest NASCAR national touring series champion, first to win a title and rookie of the year in the same season and was voted XFINITY Series most popular driver.

This season, he was announced as the heir to the No. 24 car, replacing Jeff Gordon when he retires at the end of the 2015 season.

Not too bad for a driver who graduated high school just last year.

In order to get Elliott ready for the next level in 2016, he is competing in the No. 25 NAPA car for Hendrick Motorsports for five Sprint Cup races this season.

“Obviously we want to go as fast as we can for as long as possible,” Elliott said at Martinsville about dipping his toes into the Sprint Cup Series. “We want to make the most of these races and gain as much knowledge as possible. We gotta take it one at a time.”

His second NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race will be Saturday night in the TOYOTA OWNERS 400 here at Richmond International Raceway. It'll also be the first time he competes in both an XFINITY Series event and a Sprint Cup Series event in the same weekend. 

And, if his past performance at RIR is any indication, Elliott’s chances of success at Richmond are much higher than at Martinsville.

In two XFINITY races at Richmond last season, Elliott qualified fourth and finished second in the 2014 ToyotaCare250 and qualified third and finished second again for the 2014 Virginia529 College Savings 250.

Despite the strong finishes, he said after the fall race at RIR in 2014 that he wasn’t satisfied with second place.

“We were one spot short in the spring, and one spot short now,” he said that night. “We aren’t satisfied finishing second, I don’t think anyone is.”

Elliott’s debut was in March, where he qualified 27th. Back in the pack and in the close quarters of The Paperclip, Elliott’s was beating and banging around, ended up in an accident with a damaged car and finished 38th, 73 laps down.

Elliott will also enter Sprint Cup races at Charlottle Motor Speedway, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and Darlington Raceway, where he won in the XFINITY Series last year.


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