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NASCAR Cup Series

Chase Elliott Speeds to 5th at Dover

Chase Elliott

Chase Elliott goes through driver introductions during Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Dover Motor Speedway. (Photo: Daniel Rankin | The Podium Finish)

DOVER, Del. — Two weeks after Chase Elliott broke his 42-race winless streak at Talladega Superspeedway, the Hendrick Motorsports driver got his fourth top-five finish of the 2024 season during the Würth 400 at Dover Motor Speedway.

Elliott knows what it takes to succeed at Dover, securing a win at the one-mile oval in both 2018 and 2022. The 28-year-old had the same respectable pace early on in the weekend, running eighth in practice after 22 laps around the “Monster Mile.”

Qualifying, however, did not go as smoothly for Elliott and the No. 9 team. They ended up having to start the 400-mile race from the 29th position. After the drop of the green flag, Elliott quickly showed that he could make up track position and show the same speed he had in practice. Elliott had driven up to 20th when the first caution of the race came out for Todd Gilliland spinning into Austin Dillon on Lap 39. Elliott got up to 16th after a pit stop and restart on Lap 47.

Halfway through the 120-lap first stage, Elliott made up even more ground and drove up to 13th. By Lap 71, he cracked the top 10 for the first time and got to ninth 10 circuits later. He maintained that position for the remaining 40 laps of the stage for his ninth-place stage finish after the stage ended under caution for Brad Keselowski spinning with two to go.

In the opening laps of Stage 2, Elliott battled Kyle Busch for eighth until both got into the wall, escaping with minimal damage. Elliott came down pit road with 67 laps remaining in the stage and settled in back behind Busch. He closed in on Busch and maintained fifth place for the final 19 laps of the second stage, earning himself six more stage points.

Chase Elliott

Chase Elliott during Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Dover Motor Speedway. (Photo: Josh Jones | The Podium Finish)

Elliott slipped back to seventh behind Martin Truex Jr. and Ryan Blaney during the ensuing restart. Following a caution on Lap 321 for a Ricky Stenhouse Jr. spin, Elliott climbed back up to fifth place. During the closing laps, he maintained pace but couldn’t mix it up with leaders Denny Hamlin or Kyle Larson.

Ultimately, Elliott finished 24 positions ahead of where he started.

“I feel like our car drove really good yesterday, just qualified terrible,” Elliott explained after the race. “It’s nice that when the race started I had that feel that we had in practice yesterday and it was solid. It needed a little bit on the front side of a run but other than that I thought our NAPA Chevy was pretty good.

“I had a lot of comfort and I haven’t passed that many cars in one day in a while so that was fun. Just nice to be up in the mix, obviously Denny, Kyle and those guys were really good. I never really got quite to their row, but I thought we were pretty competitive otherwise. Yeah, enjoyed the day it was a lot of fun.”

Elliott sits third in driver’s points ahead of Kansas Speedway.


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