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Elliott will Chase the Championship

Chase Elliott displayed his career best performance at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday, leading 236 of 500 Laps to clinch the victory and opportunity to advance to the Championship 4 Tournament at Phoenix.


The NASCAR Cup Series Road to the Championship 4 finished Sunday afternoon at Martinsville Speedway in the Xfinity 500.  Only four of the remaining eight contenders will advance past the weekend with a shot at the Cup Series title in Phoenix Raceway. A victory at the Paperclip by any playoff driver would clinch a spot in the Championship 4, regardless of points.

Xfinity 500 Stage 1 recap:

Brad Keselowski was awarded Pole position and paced the field in the opening laps only to turn the reins over to Marin Truex Jr. on Lap 4.   Denny Hamlin will follow in second behind his JGR teammate.

A Mandated Caution on Lap 61 allowed teams to monitor tire conditions. The lead-laps opt to pit with Martin Truex Jr. Leading first off pit road.

On Lap 89 Chase Elliott secured the lead for the first time as he muscled inside of leader Martin Truex Jr. on the front stretch for position.

Garrett Smithley’s spin out in Turn 4 brought out another caution flag on Lap 105.  Many lead Lap cars decide to pit for service, whereas, Chase Elliott remained on track for track position.

Fresher tires prevail as Chase Elliott forfeits the lead to Denny Hamlin on lap 113.

Joey Gase on track incident in Turn 4 brought yet another closing Stage caution on Lap 116. The shootout returned to green on Lap 121 with Denny Hamlin surging to the front followed by Chase Elliott.

Alex Bowman would easily maneuvered around Elliott for the second spot on Lap 123.

Denny Hamlin guards of a late charge from Alex Bowman to collect Stage 1 points.

Xfinity 500 Stage 1 results:

  1. Denny Hamlin
  2. Alex Bowman
  3. Brad Keselowski
  4. Chase Elliott
  5. Joey Logano
  6. Martin Truex Jr.
  7. Kyle Busch
  8. William Byron
  9. Kurt Busch
  10. Jimmie Johnson

Xfinity 500 Stage 2 recap:

Following the Stage 1-2 break, several lead-lap cars elected to pit with Chase Elliott wins first- off pit road. Reigning Cup Champ Kyle Busch stayed on the track to inherit the lead.

Running door to door for two laps with his older brother, Kurt Busch cleared Kyle Busch for the honors on Lap 143.

On Lap 181, Kevin Harvick was forced to pit under green due to a tire issue. When Kevin Harvick returned to the track he was running a disappointing 32nd and two laps down.

Ryan Preece accident on Lap 216 brought out the caution.   As many lead lap car pit for service, including Chase Elliott who relinquished the lead to Denny Hamlin. By Lap 240 Chase Elliott rebounds and passes Denny Hamlin on the inside lane to recover the lead.

With 10 laps to go in the stage, Chase Elliott’s lead over Denny Hamlin had expanded to 2.4 seconds with Martin Truex Jr. in third.

Xfinity 500 Stage 2 results:

  1. Chase Elliott
  2. Martin Truex Jr.
  3. Denny Hamlin
  4. Ryan Blaney
  5. Kurt Busch
  6. Kyle Busch
  7. Brad Keselowski
  8. Joey Logano
  9. Alex Bowman
  10. Ryan Newman

Xfinity 500 Final Stage recap:

Following the Stage 2- Stage 3 break, all lead lap cars pit for attention. On Lap 268 restart, Chase Elliott brought the field to green. 

After Timmy Hill smacked the safety barrier wall on Lap 352, caution flew over the track. On the restart on Lap 359, Joey Logano was followed by Martin Truex Jr., Ryan Blaney and Chase Elliott.

The 11th caution credited on Lap 400 involved James Davidson’s spin-out on Turn 2.

 On the restart on Lap 409, Martin Truex Jr. made contact with Joey Logano and drove to the front.

With 27 laps to go, Martin Truex Jr. began falling back due to loose lug on a previous pit service.  Martin Truex Jr. ended up having to pit on Lap 476 as chances to advance in playoffs diminished.

With less than 10 to go, Chase Elliott protected a more than 5-second lead over Ryan Blaney as Joey Logano claimed third.  Chase advances to the Championship 4.

Kevin Harvick, who won the regular season title, entered the final lap needing one more position to transfer to the Championship 4.  Kevin Harvick desperately turned Kyle Bush just before crossing the checker flag.  Kevin would finish 17th after confrontation and eliminated from tournament advancement.  .

Xfinity 500 Final Results:

1.Chase Elliott
2. Ryan Blaney
3. Joey Logano
4. Brad Keselowski
5. Kurt Busch
6. Alex Bowman
7. Aric Almirola
8. Clint Bowyer
9. Kyle Busch
10. Matt DiBenedetto
11. Denny Hamlin
12. Erik Jones
13. Cole Custer
14. Matt Kenseth
15. Christopher Bell
16. Ty Dillon
17. Kevin Harvick
18. Ryan Newman
19. Ryan Preece
20. Ricky Stenhouse Jr
21. Bubba Wallace
22. Martin Truex Jr
23. Austin Dillon
24. Tyler Reddick
25. Corey LaJoie
26. John Hunter Nemechek
27. Daniel Suarez
28. Michael McDowell
29. Timmy Hill
30. Jimmie Johnson
31. JJ Yeley
32. Josh Bilicki
33. Quin Houff
34. Joey Gase
35. William Byron
36. James Davison
37. Brennan Poole
38. Chris Buescher
39. Garrett Smithley

  • NASCAR Cup Series Championship 4
  1. Joey Logano
  1. Denny Hamlin
  2. Brad Keselowski
  3. Chase Elliott

The NASCAR Cup Playoff Championship 4 concludes: Sunday. Nov 8, 2020  3:00 PM ET

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