Tha Sports Junkies 101

Elliott looks for Round of 4 Berth with Win at Phoenix

Photo by Leon Hammack via Flickr


This weekend, the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads west to Phoenix International Raceway for the final race of the Round of 8. There are 5 drivers who will be on track fighting for the final spot in the Round of 4. The driver who has the most work ahead of them this weekend is Chase Elliott. Elliott looks for his first Round of 4 berth but essentially must win to make it happen.

Elliott enters this race seventh in points 49 points below the cutoff for the Round of 4. However, that does not give him justice for the way he has run in the Round of 8. It looked as if he was going to win at Martinsville before he got flat out dumped by Denny Hamlin. That one incident flipped his season upside down as it has put him in must-win mode. If it wasn’t for that, we could be talking about how in just his second season he is in the Playoff’s final round.

While a must-win situation is a tall order for even the most legendary drivers, Phoenix has been good to Elliott. In three career starts at the track, he has finished 8th, 9th, and 12th. The 12th came earlier this year in a race where he led 106 laps and won the second stage. So far, Elliott looks strong in the weekend’s on track events. Elliott led first practice with a lap time of 26.207. He then followed this up in qualifying with a strong showing of 4th. So if the rest of the weekend can go smoothly, Elliott may just be a winning position come crunch time on Sunday.