One year ago the frustration, the fire, that we saw in you of being wrecked from the lead with two to go. Now you come back here a year later, a little bit of redemption. Put into words what this one means.
“Yeah, it’s pretty amazing. My granddad passed away on Thursday, and just man, I wish my family could be here. Just things have a way of working out, honestly. It just worked out that way today. We didn’t have the best third stage. We just kept battling, and things just kind of came back around.
Want to wish happy Mother’s Day to my mom. My sister just graduated school, so big day. Definitely didn’t expect this. But just thankful for a great team. Just things have a way of working out, and to come back here to Darlington and have it go exactly the other way.”
There’s a lot to celebrate, obviously. It’s NASCAR’s 75th anniversary. You do it at the second oldest track at Darlington. I just heard your team say win No. 100 for the No. 24. What can you say about this team and the process that you guys have gone through this year?
“Yeah, I’m just thankful that I was able to get in this No. 24 car. I was too young at the time I feel like, but growing up, maturing and just having a great team around me and being able to build the core that we have. I have a great group of guys – Rudy (Fugle, crew chief), Brandon McSwain, Tyler (Jones, car chief), everybody on the team does a great job preparing good cars, and we work hard at it. It’s nice to see it go our way once.”
TOP TEAM CHEVY UNOFFICIAL TOP-10 RESULTS:
1st William Byron, No. 24 Axalta Throwback Camaro ZL1
3rd Chase Elliott, No. 9 LLumar Throwback Camaro ZL1
7th Kyle Busch, No. 8 Lucas Oil Camaro ZL1
8th Justin Haley, No. 31 LeafFilter Gutter Protection Camaro ZL1
TOP-FIVE UNOFFICIAL RESULTS:
1st William Byron (Chevrolet)
2nd Kevin Harvick (Ford)
3rd Chase Elliott (Chevrolet)
4th Brad Keselowski (Ford)
5th Bubba Wallace (Toyota)
The 2023 NASCAR Cup Series season continues at North Wilkesboro Speedway with the NASCAR All-Star Race on Sunday, May 21, at 8 p.m. ET. Live coverage can be found on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.
TEAM CHEVY POST-RACE QUOTES:
Ross Chastain, No. 1 Worldwide Express/UPS Camaro ZL1
The second-to-last restart, what happened in turn one?
“Full commit into (turn) one. I got really tight, drove up and turned myself. I wanted to squeeze him, I wanted to push him up. We had been trading positions back-and-forth all day and I wanted to push him up, for sure, but definitely didn’t want to turn myself into the wall.”
How frustrated do you think Kyle Larson is going to be with you after this one?
“I’m the one standing here talking to you (at the infield care center). For everyone at Worldwide Express, Unishippers, GlobalTranz and to drive the big brown truck today with UPS on the hood was a dream come true. We had a shot and that’s all we could ask for.”
You had one of the dominant cars today, but Kyle Larson also had a dominant car. Take us through what happened.
“Just fully committed into turn one and got way tighter than I thought. For our Worldwide Express Chevy and driving the big brown truck with UPS on the hood today – definitely wanted to squeeze him (Kyle Larson) up, but didn’t want to turn myself and ultimately took ourselves out of the race.”
Chase Elliott, No. 9 LLumar Throwback Camaro ZL1
I know you wanted to win, but you had a solid race.
“It was a solid finish, for sure. I felt like our No. 9 LLumar Chevy was plenty good enough to go up there and battle with those guys to win. I just struggled so bad in traffic; way worse than other guys do driving this caliber of a car. I just feel like from that standpoint, I’ve got a lot of work to do on my end. Alan (Gustafson, crew chief) and our team has done a really good job preparing good racecars. Our pit stops really kept us in the game all day. Obviously we got really fortunate and lucky with those cautions coming out.”
Chase, your best finish since returning from the injury. I know it wasn’t easy. You had to start mid-pack. Take us through the race and how you felt at the end.
“Yeah, I feel like our car was plenty good, really, throughout the whole day. I just do such a terrible job getting up through traffic. I get stalled out behind guys, and I just feel like people driving cars like mine don’t do that. They tend to get up through there and get to where they belong.
I feel like everything on the other side of the wall and the car that I was driving was really, really good, so I need to just try to improve and keep going to work on the areas that I’m struggling in and try to build on the improvements we’ve made. But I certainly have a long ways to go.
Really proud of our No. 9 LLumar Chevy team’s effort to keep us in the fight. Pit stops were unreal, and obviously got really lucky there at the end with those guys crashing, and then the caution coming out quick for myself and guys like Brad (Keselowski) to keep our spots like that.
I’ll certainly take third, and appreciate all the effort this weekend. We’re making some small gains here and there, just got to get some more.”
Justin Haley, No. 31 LeafFilter Gutter Protection Camaro ZL1
“Overall we had a good day. We found a good package in practice that we utilized to get a pretty decent qualifying spot compared to where we’ve been. We just kept our heads in the game all day, made some good changes and caught a few lucky breaks. We’re happy with today’s finish as a team. “
Noah Gragson, No. 42 Sunseeker Resorts Camaro ZL1
“Great day overall for our No. 42 Sunseeker Resorts Chevy team. I thought everybody at LEGACY MOTOR CLUB did a great job. I know it’s not the finish we want, but I think that’s the best race we’ve put together throughout the year. Not being so result-orientated, but more on just building the process and getting better as a team. This process is the most important thing to me right now. It’s been tough this year. I thought we put together a really good race, even with damage. We’re getting better – from practice, to qualifying, to the race. Those improvements, it’s going to take more weeks of it, but we need strong weeks like this. The pit crew did an unbelievable job day long. We picked up spots on pit road it felt like every time. I think this team is going to start getting into a rhythm now. These tracks coming up – a few of them I’ve ran, but it’s a little different running with a different organization. But once we get through these early summer months and start going to tracks for a second time, I really think we’re going to build on this program. Really happy with our day. Grateful for the process, improving and all the guys’ hard work.”
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