Chase Elliott has every right to be seething mad right now. A “weather” caution flew while the defending series champion was leading on Lap 55.
It’s a caution that in my opinion should have never flown. Was it raining? Yes. Was the track soaked? Depends on whom you ask. Should the yellow have flown?
Not one single car took rain tires on that caution. Not one. They all finished on slicks. So, why throw out the yellow to begin with?
It cost Elliott the win.
He didn’t blame that yellow though. He also defended the decision to pit too.
“When you have those late-race cautions like that and you have a mixed bag of who stays and who goes, it’s a bit of a gamble either way, I felt like,” said Elliott after leading a race high 45 of 70 laps. “I thought tires was the right move. Tires won the race, so I think it was the right move.”
Elliott says he made too many mistakes after to cost them the victory instead.
Elliott, restarted 15th and went off track on the next restart, then got into Corey LaJoie, then later spun when he was checked up from Keselowski in front and Hamlin got into his No. 9 Chevrolet as a result. He’d finish 21st.
“You get back in traffic and it just gets to be so chaotic, and then just depending on who gets through and who doesn’t kind of determines how it’s going to shake out,” Elliott continued. “I hate it. I made too many mistakes. We went off track and it was just a bad deal. We had a fast NAPA Chevy and I appreciate the effort. I hate it for Corey (LaJoie). He ran me off there, so I thought he was going to take the lane again, so I went to cross him over and I think that time he was actually going to give me the lane. So, go figure. But we’ll try again next week.”
Elliott, still is the best on road courses. He won the opening stage and led all but 12 laps by time he hit pit road. His win streak stops at four on road courses but with how things sit, I don’t see him going winless on the other six stops on them this season.