Chase Elliott Gets 1st Cup Series Win At Watkins Glen

2nd Generation Driver Wins Guaranteed Playoff Spot

Scott Stiller
August 06, 2018 - 2:02 pm
Chase Elliott Celebrates Atop The No. 9 Sun Energy Chevrolet

Timothy T. Ludwig-USA Today Sports

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Chase Elliott picked up his first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series victory by winning the Go Bowling at the Glen race Sunday.  Elliott’s margin of victory was 7.560-seconds over defending series champion Martin Truex Jr, who hounded Elliott in the closing laps until running out of gas on the final lap.

“So nice just to win it straight up and it not be a fuel mileage race,” said Elliott.  “You can win these things a lot of different ways, but to actually go out there, run in the top 2 or 3 all day and race the guy that’s won the past two road races straight-up for a victory at the end is very satisfying”.

“I just tried all I could to chase him down, and I got there with plenty of time, it’s just every time I’d start putting together some good corners and get close enough to him to even think about making a move, I’d get sideways behind him,” said Truex.  “He did a good job of putting his car exactly where it needed to be and not making a mistake.”

Elliott picked up the win in his 99th career start which included eight second-place finishes.

“I learned a lot about myself the past couple of years,” said Elliott.  “I’ve learned a lot about racing in general.  I felt like the end of last year I was probably at the top of my game that I’ve ever been as a race car driver in general.  Coming into this year with a lot of confidence, knowing that I felt like we could compete with guys and haven’t had the year that we were hoping for, but the past few weeks have been encouraging and feel like we’ve been running more like we did last fall, which was really nice, and no reason why we can’t do that more often”.

Elliott’s victory came in front of his father, NASCAR Hall-of-famer Bill Elliott, who was spotting for his son at the “bus stop” section of the track.

“It’s kind of weird,” said Bill Elliott.  “You talk about numbers, I think this was his 99th start, correct?  The 9 car wins the 99th start.  I won my first Cup race at a road course in Riverside.  I won the only Xfinity race I ever won was right here on a road course, and lo and behold, he wins his first on a road course”.

The victory, which was Hendrick Motorsports 250th Cup Series win, earns Elliott a berth in NASCAR’s playoffs and moved him up to 11th in the points standings.

Kyle Busch finished third followed by his Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Daniel Suarez and Erik Jones. Chip Ganassi Racing’s Kyle Larson finished sixth followed by his teammate Jamie McMurray.  Hendrick Motorsports William Byron was eighth and Stewart Haas Racing teammates Kurt Busch and Kevin Harvick rounded out the Top 10.

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series next race is August 12, 2018 at Michigan International Speedway.

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