GMS Racing tabs HOFer Bill Elliott to race at Road America
09 August, 2018, 08:53 | Author: Brenda Erickson
Busch, Harvick, and Truex are the only active drivers in the Cup Series with wins at both Sonoma and Watkins Glen. "Chase (Elliott) has ran a handful of races for the team so I figured I would give it a shot at Road America".
NASCAR Hall of Fame driver Bill Elliott, who has not competed in a NASCAR national series event in more than six years, will drive for GMS Racing in the Xfinity Series race August 25 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. His last Xfinity Series race was in October 2005 at Memphis. The first lap was eventful for the Penske Ford of Joey Logano as he went off course and hit the barrier, ending his day after lap one.
Truex closed to the back bumper of Elliott's No. 9 Chevy heading out of the first turn of the final lap, skidding sideways, but Elliott pulled away and Truex sputtered home second, out of fuel. #18 Kyle Busch had taken the lead prior to the Almirola incident.
Busch dominated until early in the second stage when, on Lap 27, he was passed by Elliott for the lead. "Jimmie (Johnson) has been one of my heroes for a long, long time".
Lapped traffic allowed Truex to get close - it was down to one auto length with under three laps to go - but he never found the magic he needed as Elliott drove a flawless race. He led 31 of the race's 90 laps. His Joe Gibbs Racing teammates, Erik Jones and Daniel Suarez, rounded out the top-five.
Stage Three: This was by far the most interesting stage of the race. Busch regained the lead when the race restarted for the third and final stage when Elliott pushed high off of the first turn.
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Kyle Busch, however, could lay his own claim, after fighting his way back to third place, overcoming a fueling snafu on pit road during his final stop under caution on Lap 56. While Busch had a valiant rally, it wasn't enough.
Elliott led Truex by 1.1 seconds with 19 laps left, Jones was third over 10 seconds behind and Busch 18 seconds back in eighth in what turned into a two-car struggle. Chase was able to finally capture that elusive first victory in the Cup series.
The triumph comes in Elliott's 99th career race.
Other Notables: #14 Clint Bowyer P11, #12 Ryan Blaney P12, #11 Denny Hamlin P13, #88 Alex Bowman P14, #2 Brad Keselowski P17, #31 Ryan Newman P19, #10 Aric Almirola P22, #43 Bubba Wallace Jr P25, #3 Austin Dillon P27, #21 Paul Menard P28, #48 Jimmie Johnson P30, #22 Joey Logano P37.
The victory for the Hendrick Motorsports driver gave Chevrolet its second points victory of the season and locked Elliott into the championship-deciding playoffs, which begin in Las Vegas five races from now. Like Chase, the rest of HMS is inching closer to being very competitive. It's definitely not going to happen overnight. Rookie driver William Byron got his third top 10 finish of the season and it was also his second in the last two races. The elder Elliott was part of his son's drive to victory lane as he served as one of the team's spotters. Those two are really good there.
Chase Elliott is the son of Hall of Famer Bill Elliott.
It's also the first re-flight of the company's new, recyclable Falcon 9 Block 5 rocket, which had its first launch back in May . Rather, it really is the case that the first Block 5 reuse is one of the most important things ever done by SpaceX.
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