Dawsonville NASCAR driver Chase Elliott spun out in the 133rd lap of the Geico 500 on Monday afternoon, dropping him out of the race and into fourth place of the overall standings.
Elliott’s spinout occurred in the final stage of the race at Talladega Motor Speedway when he was competing for the lead with fellow drivers Ryan Blaney, Kevin Harvick and Joey Logano. While making a push back to the front of the pack, Elliott’s number nine Chevrolet became sandwiched between Logano and driver Brad Keselowski.
Mid-race audio caught Keselowski saying that there was nothing he could do because he was getting pushed from behind, but the playback footage showed that Keselowski did not start getting pushed until after Elliott’s car began to spin.
“We really started the day struggling pretty bad, but I felt like we finally got it going pretty good later on,” Elliott said to Fox Sports following the race. “We just got caught up in a bad spot there.”
Elliott made a couple pushes in stage 1, getting as close as fifth place but ended up finishing stage one in ninth place.
Elliott’s crew chief Alan Gufstafson told Fox Sports reporters that the team was back and forth on how aggressive they wanted Elliott’s car to run during the race. Around lap 14, Elliott said that his car felt “edged up” and wanted to change the alignment.
For the majority of stage two, Elliott stayed around the 20th place but another push put him in fifth place for a few moments.
When the final stage started, Elliott began in eighth and immediately started passing competitors, holding the lead on-and-off for about seven laps until he was spun out, removing him from Monday’s race.
“The back bumper was dragging too much and we weren’t getting any air to the engine so it was getting really hot, so it wasn’t worth trying to continue,” Elliott said.
The Geico 500 was originally slated for Father’s Day but never started due to inclement weather conditions. There was a weather delay during Monday’s race for about an hour, but the race was able to finish in cloudy weather.
Nascar’s next Sprint Cup Series race will be the Pocono 325 on Saturday, June 27 and then again on Sunday in the Pocono 350. Elliott finished fourth in the race last year.