Before NASCAR’s first official race of the season, Hendrick Motorsports agreed to a new five-year contract with Chase Elliott.
The 2020 NASCAR Cup Series champ will race for his team through 2027.
Since joining full-time Hendrick, the racer has had 13 wins.
Chase Elliott’ A Champion On And Off The Track’
The 26-year-old driver said he was “so fortunate to be in this position.” Elliott complimented his team, his owner, and the racing organization.
“For me, there’s a lot of pride in driving for Hendrick Motorsports and having the opportunity to win races and compete for championships,” Elliott said.
The Georgia native finished second in last season’s Daytona 500. Elliott started Sunday’s race in 11th place.
“Chase is a champion on and off the track,” team owner Rick Hendrick said. “His talent inside the race car is undeniable, and he’s just scratching the surface of what he can do. This is a young man who is mature beyond his years, comes from an incredible family, and is humble, hardworking, and never takes anything for granted.”
One Down, One To Go For Hendrick
Hendrick will focus on re-signing Elliott’s teammate, Charlotte-born William Byron.
The longtime NASCAR owner hinted earlier last week that the contract extension was coming soon. This past Thursday, he told NBC Sports that he wanted “those guys to be with us forever.”
The 72-year-old owner also said that last week that Chase Elliott and Byron “told me they want to be here, so I’d say you should hear something on that pretty soon.”
Since Dale Earnhardt Jr. retired in 2017, Elliott has worked hard to hold on to the “Most Popular Driver” title. The son of Bill Elliott has won the honor four straight years. Bill Elliott, the 1988 Cup Series champion, holds the record for the fan vote at 16.
Chase Elliott’s resume also includes an Xfinity Series title (2014). He signed with Hendrick as a 15-year-old driver and eventually replaced NASCAR legend Jeff Gordon in 2016. The young driver also started racing with his daddy’s longtime number (No. 9) in 2018.
Could Chase Elliott Host ‘Saturday Night Live?’
Oh, the racing fans will love this idea. What if Chase Elliott hosted the late-night, long-running NBC sketch show?
Just like a former Hendrick driver did.
NASCAR Hall of Famer and Hendrick Motorsports Vice Chairman Gordon wants his drivers to branch out. He told NBC Sports that they should want to do anything.
“If you’re willing to put yourself in places people don’t expect you and you want to be there – the traditional sporting events and country music concerts are great, but let’s take that a step further – that’s what I’m trying to encourage our guys to do,” Gordon told the Sports Business Journal last week.
Gordon said he was “scared to death” when he hosted the popular show in January 2003. He sparked a mainstream boom that turned into movie roles.
Maybe NASCAR needs Chase Elliott and other drivers to expand their skillsets.