KANSAS CITY, Kan. –After disastrous results in the first two races of the Chase’s Round of 12, Chase Elliott will be on a win-or-bust mission next Sunday at Talladega.
It’s not that Elliott has run poorly. At Charlotte, he led 103 laps before being swept up in a late wreck not of his making.
In Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway, he passed eventual race winner Kevin Harvick for the lead on Lap 169, only to see his winning chances disintegrate six laps later when he returned to pit road for an unscheduled stop after a tire rub flattened his left rear.
Two subsequent brushes with the wall applied the coup de grace, and Elliott came home 31st, leaving him 12th in the Chase standings and 25 points out of eighth with only Talladega left before the cut from 12 Chase drivers to eight.
“I don’t know if we got the left rear getting up on the race track or something, and it got into the fender and cut it down,” Elliott said of the original problem. “I don’t know what to do, man. We were trying as hard as we can. We had such a good car today again, and… I don’t know what to do. Just keep after it and try to move on.”
“I just will go there (Talladega) and race our hearts out and try to win, I guess. That’s about all we can do. We have something to be proud of in the way we’ve been running. There are just some things we can’t control. I don’t know how to fix that stuff… We’re bummed, but what do you do? You just have to move on.”