If Elliott Sadler wants to make a serious run at the NASCAR Nationwide crown, an achievement that has eluded him the past two seasons when he was runner-up to Ricky Stenhouse Jr., he needs to continue running strong.
Sadler is currently third in the standings, 42 points behind Regan Smith, and only has one finish lower than 15th – a 36th-place finish at Bristol. Through nine races this season, he has three top fives and five top 10s, including a runner-up finish at Darlington.
If he is to continue his climb toward the apex of the standings – he was 10th after the fourth race – he’ll need to continue the hot streak he’s been on at Charlotte. Over the past four races at the 1.5-mile track, Sadler has finishes of third, fourth, fifth and 10th, dating back to the May 2011 race. His best series finish at Charlotte came in October 2005 when he was runner-up to Ryan Newman.
Although Sadler has never won at Charlotte, it’s possible he could take his inaugural trip to Victory Lane there this weekend. It’s a sure bet that a victory or another top-five finish, which would be his 50th in the series, could provide just the boost he needs to get closer to that elusive crown.