Chase Elliott Makes Daytona Debut

Chase Elliott on track Friday during the ARCA test at Daytona Int'l Speedway. (Daytona Int'l Speedway Photo)

Chase Elliott on track Friday during the ARCA test at Daytona Int’l Speedway. (Daytona Int’l Speedway Photo)

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Bill Elliott has a big place in the history of racing at Daytona International Speedway. He is a two-time Daytona 500 champion and the record holder for the fastest lap around DIS in a stock car with a speed of 210.364 mph.

On Friday, the next chapter in the Elliott legacy at the “World Center of Racing” began as Elliott’s son Chase took his first laps around the storied 2.5-mile tri-oval as part of the three-day ARCA Racing Presented By Menards test session.

“It was really exciting for me,” Elliott said of his first laps driving the No. 9 Hendrickcars.com Chevrolet around Daytona. “I told Dad this when we were flying down here, it’s weird coming down here and not to come watch him (drive). It’s kind of a weird feeling for him and I both.”

Elliott is among the approximately 40 drivers that are taking part in the three-day test session that teams are using to prepare for the Lucas Oil 200 Presented By MAVTV American Real on Saturday, Feb. 15, part of Budweiser Speedweeks 2014.

“The race track has been good,” Elliott said. “Doing qualifying runs is pretty straight forward. If we ever get a chance to do a little bit of drafting, that’s where I’m going to have to learn a lot there. The superspeedway stuff is different for me.”

Bill Elliott is in attendance for the test and Chase plans to pick his brain when it comes to drafting.

“I think his knowledge and his experience is going to be more so beneficial when it comes time to be around other cars,” Elliott said. “I think he’s one of the best when it comes to understanding the air and what it takes to take advantage of it when you’re with other guys around you and trying to get runs on people. Whenever that side comes into play, I’m sure he is going to have some tips for me.”

The 18-year-old Elliott of Dawsonville, Ga., is one of the rising stars in stock car racing. He is a developmental driver for Hendrick Motorsports and has been competing in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series, ARCA and the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

In 2013, he accomplished some impressive achievements.

In the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, he made nine starts and posted five top-five finishes, including becoming the youngest winner in series’ history with a surprising victory at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. He also became the youngest pole winner in the series’ history at Bristol Motor Speedway.

In ARCA, he became that series’ youngest superspeedway winner at Pocono Raceway in June.

Elliott’s plans for the 2014 season have not been finalized but he does have plans to compete in the Lucas Oil 200 Presented by MAV American Real, the 80-lap, 200-mile race that is held prior to The Sprint Unlimited.

“To finally be able to come down here and be a part of this is pretty neat,” Elliott said.

- Defending Daytona winner John Wes Townley topped both test sessions on Friday at Daytona Int’l Speedway in his Venturini Motorsports entry. Townley made 11 laps in the morning session, reaching a top speed of 182.002 mph. He bettered that in the afternoon session, clocking in at 183.501 mph.

Michael Self, Tom Hessert, Austin Wayne Self and Grant Enfinger completed the top five during the morning test session. Tyler Reddick, Hessert, Shannon McIntosh and Self were the top five in the second session.

- Multi-time USAC champion Dave Darland made his Daytona debut in the afternoon session, timing in 37th overall with a fast lap of 178.028 mph. Other notables included 2013 CARS X-1R Pro Cup Series champion Clay Rogers (26th in the first session, eighth in the second), Chase Elliott (17th in the first session, 25th in the second), Bobby Gerhart (sixth in both sessions) and 2013 ARCA/CRA Super Series champion Travis Braden (25th in the first session, 15th in the second).

Posted by on Dec 20 2013 Filed under ARCA, Latest Headlines, Stock Cars, Top Stories. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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