Chase Elliott Captures Third Win of His Rookie Season

Chase Elliott celebrates in Victory Lane
Chase Elliott celebrates in Victory Lane

He started out strong and faded back, but came back in winning fashion at Chicagoland Speedway. Chase Elliott was able to claim his third win of the season and gained the points lead Saturday night.

Pole-sitter Brian Scott took over the lead early but Elliott kept up with the top runners starting from the third position. By lap 16, Elliott was on the bumper of Scott. They swapped the lead beginning on lap 21 with Elliott taking the lead and Scott quickly battling back. Elliott was able to keep the lead until lap 51 when a charging Ryan Blaney took over the top spot.

Blaney kept the lead until Kyle Larson found a line and good speed in his car and put pressure on Blaney for the lead on lap 108. They would trade the lead for a couple times before the lap would pass and Larson would take it three wide for the solid lead.

Green flag pits stops had cycled through when a third caution on the day for debris was called. On the restart, Blaney and Elliott would be back on the front row. Elliott was loose and Blaney was chasing his own car as well. The pair were side-by-side for two laps before Elliott got the lead. Blaney kept slipping backwards until he was in fourth place. By lap 154 Blaney had fallen to ninth and his crew chief called him into the pits.

Larson was again charging through the field and put pressure on Elliott for first by lap 135. Larson would again regain the lead. Six laps later Elliott was back in the hunt for clean air and just got by Larson who was sideways coming out of the corner.

Larson would be out front again on lap 159 after Elliott came in for green flag pit stops. That handed the top spot over to Trevor Bayne who would lead the next 14 laps. Bayne had to come in for service on lap 175 and Elliott took the position and it was smooth sailing into the win for the No. 9 JR Motorsports team.

Only three cautions came out during the race. The first caution was on lap 9 for an expired engine for the No. 54 Camry driven by Sam Hornish, Jr. The next two cautions were for debris.

The Dash for Cash winner was Brian Scott who picked up a rather large check with a large amount – $100,000.

Erik Jones, who started in his very first Nationwide Series race in the No. 20 for Joe Gibbs Racing Saturday night, led a couple of laps and finished a strong seventh. Ryan Blaney who had an ill-handling race car after leading 47 laps rebounded for a ninth place finish.

The top ten: Chase Elliott, Trevor Bayne, Kyle Larson, Kasey Kahne, Ty Dillon, Brian Scott, Erik Jones, Chris Buescher, Ryan Blaney and Elliott Sadler.

Chase Elliott now has the points lead in the Nationwide Series with seven points over Regan Smith.

The next NASCAR Nationwide race will be Saturday, July 26 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway at 4:30 p.m. ET.