While today was great for Tyler Reddick, NASCAR darling Chase Elliott was left thinking about what could have been. When it comes to stock car racing, one or two mistakes can make all the difference. It’s no secret that No. 9 has been the best road course driver in the Cup Series for the last four years or more. However, it wasn’t enough today.
These number neighbors battled it out in the third stage. Each separated themselves from the rest of the field and raced hard down the stretch. Watching the NAPA and 3CHI schemes go back and forth. One strong move from Reddick, which was about as clean as you can get at Road America was a major turning point.
‘A Couple of Mistakes’
“Yeah just do a better job, first of all, congrats to him [Reddick], I know he’s been super close to that first win,” Elliott started. He included that he was happy for the RCR team.
“For us, just proud of our NAPA team, I didn’t do a very good job there,” he continued. “I just let him stay close to pressure me there when we had decent tires. Never could get enough of a gap, made a couple of mistakes. I was gaining a gap there a couple of times and made a couple of mistakes and let him get back close enough to get me out of sync. Then after that just started struggling. So, obviously, it was super difficult to get to somebody to pass them. It was impressive that he was able to get up there and capitalize on my mistakes.”
While it looked like the sport’s most popular driver was going to come away with back-to-back wins after his success in Nashville, things changed. Reddick passed quickly and kept it moving. Chase Elliott just couldn’t get the speed to catch back up.
Chase Elliott Still Leads NASCAR Cup Series
While he wasn’t able to take the win today, Chase Elliott is still sitting pretty on top of the NASCAR Cup Series points standings. With 624 points, he is the first driver to break the 600 mark this season. His two wins and five top-5 finishes are bolstering that standing as well. Winless Ryan Blaney, who took stage two at Road America, sits in second with 591 points.
Then, you have Ross Chastain in third with 589 points, he just picked up his ninth top-5 finish on the year and Trackhouse Racing continues to be a force in the series this season. To round out the top five, Kyle Larson and Joey Logano. They have 553 and 531 points, respectively. This year, the field is absolutely stacked and there’s no telling who is going to win the season or the playoffs.
You can tell that Chase Elliott wanted to win today. He drove hard and set himself up to take a stab at it. However, it wasn’t his day. Reddick had a faster car and was able to speed off to the checkered flag. The first one of his career. Of course, that No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet is going to be gunning for a championship this year.
He may have lost the battle today, but so far, Elliott is winning the war.