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Elliott finishes seventh in Pensacola

POSTED: December 29, 2009 4:30 p.m.

Dawsonville native Chase Elliott finished seventh in the Snowball Derby in Pensacola, Fla. on Dec. 6.

  

Elliott, who turned 14 just a week before, qualified 10th. He ran up front with some of the nation’s best drivers.

  

The 42nd Snowball Derby was won by NASCAR driver Kyle Busch.

  

The 300-lap Super Late Model race is considered by many as the “Daytona 500” of short track racing and attracts the best drivers from all across the country. This year, the 37-car field included Busch, David Stremme and Steve Wallace, as well as Matt Kenseth’s son Ross.

  

“The competition was tremendous, I learned so much this past week just being there, not to mention actually racing against these guys,” said Elliott after the race.  “Any one of them in the entire field was more than capable of winning and I am just thankful that the Aaron’s team was able to be a part of it all.”

  

The second-generation driver made it a double header weekend with a start in Saturday’s Allen Turner Snowflake 100 Pro Late Model race. Elliott started 15th and survived a wreck-fest to finish 12th.

  

Elliott’s top-10 run at Pensacola, Florida’s Five Flags Speedway put the final touches on an already impressive rookie resume. 

  

In 31 combined Pro and Super Late Model starts this season, Elliott recorded four wins, 13 top-five and 24 top-10 finishes. 

  

Of those, seven finishes outside of the top-10, three were DNF’s due to wrecks or mechanical failures.  His worst actual finish was 18th in his first career Super Late Model start.

  

Elliott scored his first win in only his seventh start during a Georgia Asphalt Series (GAS) race at his home track, Lanier National Speedway (Braselton, Ga.), becoming the youngest winner of a sanctioned Late Model race at Lanier and the youngest winner in the GAS series.  He followed that up with another GAS win at Watermelon Capital Speedway (Cordele, Ga.) and went on to win the 2009 GAS championship and Rookie of the Year honors.

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