Fort Worth, TX (SportsNetwork.com) – After taking the last two weekends off,
the Nationwide Series returns to action on Saturday at Texas Motor Speedway.
Three races remain. Following Texas, the series will move on to Phoenix (Nov.
8) and then conclude its season at Homestead (Nov. 15).
Rookie Chase Elliott holds a very comfortable 42-point lead over second-place
and JR Motorsports teammate Regan Smith.
In April, Elliott, the son of 1988 NASCAR Cup Series champion Bill Elliott,
won his first Nationwide race. It came in just his sixth start. He also became
the second youngest driver to win an event in NASCAR’s second-tier series,
doing so at the age of 18 years, 4 months and 7 days. Joey Logano holds the
series record as the youngest winner. Logano was 18 years and 21 days old when
he won in June 2008 at Kentucky.
Elliott led a total of 38 laps and held off Sprint Cup Series regulars Kyle
Busch, Kyle Larson, Kevin Harvick and Dale Earnhardt Jr. at the finish. His
victory here in the spring allowed him to take over the points lead for the
first time in the season.
“It’s been awhile since we last visited Texas Motor Speedway, but the last
time was a special moment for the (No. 9) NAPA Auto Parts (sponsored) team,”
Elliott said. “Winning for the first time together is a moment I’ll never
forget. It was awesome.”
Elliott will attempt to become the first rookie in the series to win both
races at Texas in the same season. Earlier this year, he won at Darlington and
Chicagoland, a 1.5-mile track similar to Texas.
“There’s been a lot of racing that’s happened since the last time we were at
Texas Motor Speedway,” he said. “Having two weeks off before this weekend’s
race was very important for my team, as we try and collectively get better
coming out of the 18-consecutive week stretch.
“We have three races left in what has been an exciting year, but we have to
stay focused and continue to work together as a team. We look to put together
a better run than we did in the spring, bringing us one step closer to our
Forty-three teams are on the entry list for the O’Reilly Auto Parts Challenge.
Austin Dillon, Matt Kenseth, Busch, Harvick, Larson and Logano are those
Sprint Cup regulars competing in this race. Dillon, the 2013 Nationwide
champion, is making his first start this season, driving the No. 33 Chevrolet
for Richard Childress Racing.
Series: NASCAR Nationwide. Date: Saturday, Nov. 1. Race: O’Reilly Auto Parts
Challenge. Site: Texas Motor Speedway. Track: 1.5-mile oval. Start time: 3:30
p.m. ET. Laps: 200. Miles: 300. 2013 Winner: Brad Keselowski. Television:
ESPN2. Radio: Performance Racing Network (PRN)/SIRIUS NASCAR Radio.