Elliott Eyes Three-Peat

Chase Elliott

Chase Elliott shoots for his third straight Nationwide Series victory in Friday night’s ToyotaCare 250 at Richmond International Raceway.

The 18-year-old has won the division’s last two races at Texas Motor Speedway and Darlington Raceway, the first victories in a career that spans only seven series starts.

The streak has provided the series with a tremendous amount of energy and Elliott is enjoying his memorable performance.

“The past few weeks have been unbelievable,” said Elliott, who leads the series standings by 13 over JR Motorsports teammate Regan Smith heading into the weekend. “They are memories I will never forget. But there’s so much racing to be done, and everybody knows that. I just have to make sure we keep our heads on straight and make sure we stay on the right track, and that’s to get better every week. We need to continue to get better, because that's what our competition is doing right now.”

The competition Elliott speaks of includes Smith, who began the year with a win at Daytona and has put together a series of consistent finishes since the season opener.

However, Smith believes one of the challenges he’ll face this weekend is the .750-mile Richmond track itself where he has enjoyed recent success.

“I used to joke that I was a big fan of the Richmond track, it just wasn’t a fan of me,” said Smith. “But it’s true that for whatever reason it has certainly been one of the more challenging tracks for me. It was a big step forward to run fifth there last spring with JRM. Then to follow up with a top-three last fall, that goes a long way in helping you build confidence at a tough track.”

Elliott is a fan of Richmond and the track’s unique layout. He’s hoping that confidence will be beneficial to having another good outing on Friday night.

“If I constructed a new race track, I would make it racy but where you have to run up against the wall,” Elliott explained. “It would probably be a shorter track, maybe just a little bigger than a half-mile. The biggest thing would be to make sure the surface is worn out, because that's going to put on the best show for the fans, and that's what matters.”

Racing at Richmond always matters for Elliott Sadler since it’s a homecoming for the Virginia native. Sadler has also enjoyed relative success at RIR over the years as well.

In 21 Nationwide Series starts at Richmond, Sadler has two top-five and eight top-10 finishes with 76 laps led. In addition, the veteran driver has 24 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at RIR.

“Richmond is always has a special place in my heart,” said Sadler, who trails Elliott by 20 points in the series standings. “It’s always great to race in front of my home state fans and family and hopefully we’ll give them something to cheer about this weekend.”

Motor Racing Network - "The Voice of NASCAR" - will have live coverage of the Nationwide Series ToyotaCare 250 at Richmond International Raceway on Friday at 6:30 p.m. (ET), with live streaming at MRN.com.

Race Center

NASCAR Nationwide Series 250

@ Richmond Int'l Raceway
Friday, September 05, 2014 7:00 PM
Radio Start:
MRN, 7 p.m. (ET)
TV Start:
ESPN2, 7 p.m. (ET)

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