Hendrick Motorsports Chase Elliott started Sunday’s Real Heroes 400 at Darlington Raceway in South Carolina from eleventh place on the grid as the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series returned to real world racing for the first time in ten weeks albeit behind closed doors.
Elliott in the No.9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet had a great day making his way through the field pro finish the race in fourth place behind race winner Kevin Harvick in the No.4 No.4 Busch Beer Stewart Haas Racing Ford Mustang, Alex Bowman in the No.88 CI Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet and Chip Ganassi Racing’s Kurt Busch in the No.1 Monster Energy Chevrolet for Chip Ganassi Racing.
Speaking following the race Elliott said:
“Had a slow start for sure, it was nice to get our NAPA Chevy back driving decent there at the end. Hate that we were so far in left field to start the race, but really proud of the effort. Pit stops were fantastic and the adjustments were really good. The track kept changing and we were able to kind of keep up with things and finally get caught back up to a decent place at the end. Hopefully we have something really good to build off of on Wednesday. Heard that was our best run at Darlington, so that’s good! Hopefully Wednesday is a few spots better.”
“Thought NASCAR did a great job of executing today in a safe manner. It was a good atmosphere, in my opinion. The lack of people is certainly a weird vibe, but I think from execution and them (NASCAR) doing a really good job of keeping everybody safe and trying to execute the first race back was very well done. Looking forward to Wednesday, like I said, just excited to be back racing. It was a fun day, it was a fun vibe. I loved the atmosphere and the fact that we didn’t practice, I thought it was really cool. I think it had zero percent effect on the race winner today. Hopefully we can kind of make this a trend and get back to our roots. It reminded me a lot of short track racing, which I think is a lot of fun. Looking forward to Wednesday.”