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Elliott Holds Off Charges to Win Kansas

| Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Sunday, October 21 2018

Chase Elliott held on to win at Kansas Speedway on Sunday. (RacinToday/HHP photo by Alan Marler)

Young Chase Elliott didn’t really need to win the Hollywood Casino 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup race at Kansas Speedway on Sunday as his victory two weeks ago had already secured him a berth in the next round of the series’ playoffs.

But, like all drivers, Elliott, 22, is greedy. Greedy for victories. The Hendrick Motorsports driver used that greed to win at Kansas and build big momentum.

“Just proud of the effort,” he said. “We certainly were not where we wanted to be at the beginning of the year. And had a good few weeks.”

The victory was Elliott’s third of the season and came in a race in which he led 44 of 267 laps.

“It’s been a great couple of months,” Elliott said. “We got to keep it rolling. This is the time when it really counts.”

Kyle Busch of Joe Gibbs Racing finished second while Kyle Larson of Chip Ganassi Racing was third.

Larson made a late charge in a race which he needed to win in order to advance.

Sunday’s was the cutoff race for drivers hoping to advance from the Round of 12 to the Round of 8 in the playoffs.

Falling out of the playoffs as a result of events at Kansas were Alex Bowman, Larson, Ryan Blaney and former champions Brad Keselowski.

Advancing Sunday were Busch, Joey Logano, Kevin Harvick, Kurt Busch, Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex Jr.  They joined Elliott and Aric Almirola who earned automatic berths by virtue of winning the previous two Round of 12 races.

The three-race Round of 8 begins next weekend at the Martinsville Speedway short track.

Joey Logano started from the pole, won the first stage and led 100 laps.

Logano cruised until green flag pit stop at about the half way point of the 267-lap race. When the pitting cycled through, Harvick was out front and stayed there to win Stage 2.

Harvick led until the final green flag stop of the day with just over 50 laps to go. During his stop, he was penalized for speeding and hopes for getting his first victory of the playoffs ended.

When pitting finally cycled through with just over 40 laps to go, Elliott had the lead. It was a lead he never surrendered.

Larson made a late charge in a race he needed to win in order to advance. Asked if he thought he had a chance at catching and passing Elliott on the final laps, Larson said, “Yes I did.

“Our car (which was a backup car as he wrecked his primary earlier in the weekend) was fast. A lot better than in practice. Thought we had the balance really good there at the end. Wish I could have done something there at the end but Chase ran a good race up front.”

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Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Race – 18th Annual Hollywood Casino 400

Kansas Speedway

Kansas City, Kansas

Sunday, October 21, 2018

 

  1. (13)  Chase Elliott (P), Chevrolet, 267.
  2. (7)  Kyle Busch (P), Toyota, 267.
  3. (27)  Kyle Larson (P), Chevrolet, 267.
  4. (6)  Erik Jones, Toyota, 267.
  5. (12)  Martin Truex Jr.  (P), Toyota, 267.
  6. (5)  Brad Keselowski (P), Ford, 267.
  7. (4)  Ryan Blaney (P), Ford, 267.
  8. (1)  Joey Logano (P), Ford, 267.
  9. (10)  Alex Bowman (P), Chevrolet, 267.
  10. (3)  Aric Almirola (P), Ford, 267.
  11. (23)  Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 267.
  12. (2)  Kevin Harvick (P), Ford, 267.
  13. (14)  Clint Bowyer (P), Ford, 267.
  14. (9)  Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 266.
  15. (16)  Ryan Newman, Chevrolet, 266.
  16. (21)  Chris Buescher, Chevrolet, 266.
  17. (20)  Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet, 266.
  18. (11)  Kurt Busch (P), Ford, 266.
  19. (28)  David Ragan, Ford, 265.
  20. (15)  Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ford, 265.
  21. (25)  AJ Allmendinger, Chevrolet, 265.
  22. (22)  Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 264.
  23. (31)  Matt DiBenedetto, Ford, 264.
  24. (8)  Daniel Suarez, Toyota, 263.
  25. (30)  Ty Dillon, Chevrolet, 263.
  26. (29)  Bubba Wallace #, Chevrolet, 263.
  27. (24)  Michael McDowell, Ford, 262.
  28. (26)  Regan Smith, Chevrolet, 259.
  29. (35)  Landon Cassill(i), Chevrolet, 258.
  30. (19)  Trevor Bayne, Ford, 258.
  31. (36)  JJ Yeley(i), Toyota, 256.
  32. (18)  Paul Menard, Ford, 256.
  33. (38)  BJ McLeod(i), Chevrolet, 250.
  34. (34)  Corey LaJoie, Chevrolet, 219.
  35. (37)  Kyle Weatherman, Chevrolet, Transmission, 216.
  36. (39)  Reed Sorenson, Chevrolet, Vibration, 157.
  37. (33)  Jeffrey Earnhardt, Toyota, Transmission, 151.
  38. (17)  William Byron #, Chevrolet, Engine, 55.
  39. (32)  Ross Chastain(i), Chevrolet, Accident, 37.
  40. (40)  Timmy Hill(i), Toyota, Engine, 3.

 

Average Speed of Race Winner:  152.713 mph.

Time of Race:  2 Hrs, 38 Mins, 2 Secs. Margin of Victory:  0.903 Seconds.

Caution Flags:  3 for 17 laps.

Lead Changes:  11 among 8 drivers.

Lap Leaders:   J. Logano (P) 1-40;A. Allmendinger 41-49;B. Wallace # 50-51;J. Logano (P) 52-62;R. Stenhouse Jr. 63;R. Blaney (P) 64-71;J. Logano (P) 72-120;R. Blaney (P) 121;B. Keselowski (P) 122-137;K. Harvick (P) 138-213;B. Keselowski (P) 214-223;C. Elliott (P) 224-267.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led):  Joey Logano (P) 3 times for 100 laps; Kevin Harvick (P) 1 time for 76 laps; Chase Elliott (P) 1 time for 44 laps; Brad Keselowski (P) 2 times for 26 laps; AJ Allmendinger 1 time for 9 laps; Ryan Blaney (P) 2 times for 9 laps; Bubba Wallace # 1 time for 2 laps; Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 1 time for 1 lap.

Stage #1 Top Ten: 22,4,12,18,21,10,14,20,48,9

Stage #2 Top Ten: 4,12,22,9,18,42,20,48,88,78

 

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| Managing Editor, RacinToday.com Sunday, October 21 2018
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