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NASCAR Cup: Chase Elliott wins again at Charlotte Roval, Kyle Busch eliminated from playoffs

CONCORD, NORTH CAROLINA – OCTOBER 11: Chase Elliott, driver of the #9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Cup Series Bank of America ROVAL 400 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on October 11, 2020 in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

By AMANDA VINCENT

Chase Elliott continued his string of consecutive road-course wins Sunday with his victory in the Bank of America Roval 400 on the Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway Roval. The win was his fourth-straight on a road course, dating back to the 2019 NASCAR Cup Series season and including last year’s race on the Roval. With four-straight, Elliott ties NASCAR Hall of Famer and former Hendrick Motorsports driver Jeff Gordon for most-consecutive road-course wins, all-time. 

“Well, I just had another really fast NAPA Camaro and really appreciate the effort,” Elliott said. “I feel like road courses have been fortunate to us the last few trips, but I feel like we just try to get a little better every time and tweak on the small things. I feel like I tweaked on some small things and got a little better than what I was here last year, which was good. And I’m just really proud of the effort. I appreciate everybody at Hendrick, Chevrolet, Mountain Dew, Kelley Blue Book, UniFirst, Hooters and all of our partners that make this deal go. And it’s always special to win here at Charlotte with the shop being right across the street. I appreciate all the effort there. The best way to get into the next round is to win and so, hopefully, we can do something with it.”

Sunday’s win also was Elliott’s third win of the 2020 Cup Series season and secured his advancement to the round of eight of the 2020 playoffs in the final race in the second round, or round of 12.

Joey Logano took runner-up honors, Erik Jones finished third, Kurt Busch fourth, and Ryan Blaney rounded out the top-five.

While Elliott joined seven other drivers in advancing to the next round, four drivers were eliminated from championship contention. Drivers who saw their 2020 title hopes dashed Sunday included reigning Cup Series champion Kyle Busch, Austin Dillon and Stewart-Haas Racing teammates Clint Bowyer and Aric Almirola. All four of the eliminated drivers were in provisional elimination spots heading into the race.

CLICK HERE TO SEE THE RESEEDED POINTS STANDINGS.

Kyle Busch finished 30th after making a late-race pit stop.

“It’s just been the year. Nothing has played out and been on our side,” Kyle Busch said. “It’s just been unfortunate circumstances, a lot of bad luck. These guys on this M&Ms Camry team never give up, and they fight all year long and every race and every lap, every pit stop, as we can see. Man, just one of them off years. It’s been a terrible year for me. As other sports greats would say, there’s many other drivers that would love to have a year that we’re having, but it’s just frustrating to know how good we are and what we’re capable of and being champions from last year to not come out here and be able to succeed and  be able to win. Fact of the matter, if we could win, we would be a heck of a lot better off. I knew this round was going to be trouble with the year we had. I was right.”

Elliott tied Hendrick Motorsports teammate William Byron for most laps led Sunday, each leading 27 laps of the 109-lap race. Byron finished in the sixth position.

After Brad Keselowski led the opening seven laps, taking the lead from pole sitter Denny Hamlin on the first lap, Elliott took his first lead on lap eight. He remained up front until losing the lead to Bowyer on lap 13.

Ty Dillon took the lead on lap 21 and won the first 25-lap stage of the race.

Ryan Blaney won the second stage that ended at lap 50. After Dillon took the stage-one win, he gave up the lead to pit. Christopher Bell and Byron both led laps before Blaney took his stage-winning lead on lap 40.

Like Dillon before him, Blaney gave up the lead to pit after his stage win. And like early in the second stage, Bell and Byron led early in the final 59-lap stage before Blaney took the lead by staying out during a lap-70 caution for an incident involving Austin Dillon and Kyle Busch.

Kyle Busch had already made an unscheduled pit stop for a flat tire during the second stage.

Ryan Preece took a brief lead when Byron spun on lap 74. Elliott’s HMS teammate Alex Bowman also led laps before Elliott retook the lead on lap 84. Kyle Busch recovered from his earlier on-track issues to be in position to take the lead when Elliott gave it up to pit during a lap-86 debris caution. But on lap 92, Elliott retook the position and maintained it for the remainder of the race.

Martin Truex Jr. finished seventh, Bowman was eighth, Cole Custer ninth, and Bowyer was 10th.

Below, is the complete finishing order of the Bank of America Roval 400:

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Posted by on October 11, 2020. Filed under Breaking News,Cup Series,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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