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CHEVY NCS AT LAS VEGAS: Team Chevy Advance

TEAM CHEVY ADVANCE
SOUTH POINT 400
LAS VEGAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA
SEPT. 26, 2021

RACE #30 – LAS VEGAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
The Round of 12 of the NASCAR Cup Series (NCS) Playoffs for four Team Chevy drivers opens Sunday, September 26, with the 267-lap South Point 400 on the 1.5-mile oval of Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Chevrolet has won nine of the 27 NCS races held at the Nevada venue, including the past two by Kyle Larson (March 2021) and Kurt Busch (September 2020). Larson, first in the Playoff standings entering the race, will start from the pole in his No. 5 Tarlton and Son Camaro ZL1 1LE.

The diverse three-race set of the second round also includes the 2.66-mile Talladega Superspeedway oval and the Charlotte ROVAL, where the field will be trimmed from 12 drivers to eight in pursuit for the NCS championship title.
A look at Team Chevy in the NASCAR Cup Series title hunt:

Kyle Larson, No. 5 Tarlton and Son Camaro ZL1 1LE – 1st in Standings (3,059 Points)
Victories: 6 (field-high)
Top-Fives: 16; Top-10’s: 21; Poles: 1; Laps Led: 1,905
Average Finish: 9.0
Stage Wins: 14
At Las Vegas (10 career NCS starts): Wins: 1; Top-Fives: 4; Top-10’s: 7; Average Finish: 9.8
Of Note: In the March 2021 NCS race at Las Vegas, Larson led a field-high 103 of 267 laps to capture his first win of the 2021 NCS season and his first with Hendrick Motorsports. The NCS Regular Season Champion starts the second round 46 points above the cutline.

Chase Elliott, No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Camaro ZL1 1LE – 6th in Standings (3,021 points)
Victories: 2
Top-Fives: 12; Top-10’s: 17; Laps Led: 524; Average Finish: 12.0
Stage Wins: 3
At Las Vegas (9 career NCS starts): Top-Fives: 2; Top-10’s: 3; Average Finish: 20.556
Of Note: The 2021 NCS season marks Elliott’s sixth consecutive year of being part of the Playoff field. Six of his 13 career NCS wins have come in the Playoffs. Elliott has wins at five of the next seven venues on the NCS schedule.

Alex Bowman, No. 48 Ally Camaro ZL1 1LE –7th in Standings (3,015 Points)
Victories: 3
Top-Fives: 7; Top-10’s 14; Pole Wins: 1; Laps Led: 151; Average Finish: 14.1
At Las Vegas (9 career NCS starts): Top-Fives: 1; Top-10’s: 2; Average Finish: 19.667
Of Note: The 2021 NCS season marks Bowman’s fourth-career Playoffs appearance. Bowman has raced his way into the Round of 12 for the last three years. Bowman tied a career best at Bristol of a fifth-place finish to advance to the Round of 12.

William Byron, No. 24 Axalta/Service King Camaro ZL1 1LE – 8th in Standings (3,014 Points)
Victories: 1
Top-Fives: 10; Top-10’s: 17; Pole Wins: 2; Laps Led: 276; Average Finish: 13.7
Stage Wins: 3
At Las Vegas (8 career NCS starts): Top-10’s: 2; Average Finish: 20.286
Of Note: The 2021 NCS season marks Byron’s third-career Playoffs appearance. Byron produced a career-high third place finish at Bristol, making up an 18-point deficit to advance to the Round of 12. In six NCS races on 1.5-mile tracks thus far this season, Byron has captured one win (Homestead-Miami Speedway) and finished inside the top 10 in five of those races.

CHEVROLET OCCUPIES SEVEN OF 12 NXS PLAYOFF SPOTS
Seven drivers of the Chevrolet Camaro SS – AJ Allmendinger, Justin Allgaier, Noah Gragson, Justin Haley, Jeb Burton, Myatt Snider and Jeremy Clements – qualified for the 12-driver NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) Playoffs that begin Saturday, September 25, at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Allmendinger sealed the regular season championship with his fourth victory of the season at Bristol Motor Speedway. The Kaulig Racing driver returns to Las Vegas Motor Speedway looking to become a repeat winner after capturing the NXS victory at Las Vegas in March. Chevrolet, with 12 NXS wins, is heading into the NXS playoff run atop the Manufacturer Standings.

NCWTS ROUND OF EIGHT
Reigning NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS) champion Sheldon Creed, Zane Smith and Carson Hocevar advanced to the Round of 8 in their Chevrolet Silverado’s. The reigning NCWTS Champion, Sheldon Creed, had an impressive first round, capturing the victory at two of the three races in the Round of 10. Creed leads the Team Chevy brigade sitting second in the driver standings. The Round of 8 kicks off at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Friday, September 24, with the Victoria’s Voice Foundation 200 Presented by Westgate Resorts.

TWENTY YEARS AGO – GORDON RECORDS CHEVY’S FIRST
Career Chevrolet driver Jeff Gordon gave the Bowtie Brand its first victory at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 4, 2001. Gordon led twice, including the final 20 laps of the 267-lap race, after starting 24th. Jimmie Johnson leads Chevrolet and all NCS drivers with four wins at the track, including three in a row in 2005, ’06 and ’07.

CHEVROLET HOLDS LEAD IN MANUFACTURER STANDINGS
Chevrolet remains the leader in the NASCAR Cup Series Manufacturer Standings in pursuit of its 40th title. Team Chevy has recorded field highs of 14 victories, 128 top-10 finishes, 3,300 laps led and 26 stage wins through 29 races. The Bowtie Brand has already surpassed its totals for wins (9), top-10 finishes (120), laps led (2,399) and stage wins (21) from the 36-race 2020 season.

BUSCH TO MAKE 750TH START ON HOME TRACK
Las Vegas native Kurt Busch, driving the No. 1 Chip Ganassi Racing Camaro ZL1 1LE, will make his 750th NASCAR Cup Series start on his home track. In his 22nd season, the 2004 NASCAR Cup Series champion is the longest-tenured active driver in terms of career starts. He has 33 wins and 327 top-10 finishes. Busch, 43, qualified for the Playoffs this season for the 15th time in the 18 years of the postseason.

ON THE WAY TO THE GREEN
With no practice or qualifying for the 267-lap race, the starting lineup is determined by NASCAR’s metrics system that was introduced to the series last year and incorporates results from both individual races and season-long results.

Team Chevy’s Top-20 Starters:
1st Kyle Larson, No. 5 Tarlton and Son Camaro ZL1 1LE
3rd William Byron, No. 24 Axalta/Service King Camaro ZL1 1LE
7th Alex Bowman, No. 48 Ally Camaro ZL1 1LE
11th Chase Elliott, No. 9 NAPA Auto Parts Camaro ZL1 1LE
13th Tyler Reddick, No. 8 Cat Trial 11: Hot Wheels Camaro ZL1 1LE
15th Austin Dillon, No. 3 BETMGM Camaro ZL1 1LE
16th Erik Jones, No. 43 Medallion Bank Camaro ZL1 1LE
18th Ross Chastain, No. 42 Clover Camaro ZL1 1LE
20th Kurt Busch, No. 1 Monster Energy Camaro ZL1 1LE

BOWTIE BULLETS
· Chevrolet leads all manufacturers with 14 wins, 128 top-10 finishes and 3,300 laps led of 7,293 total this season.
· In addition to its nine wins, Chevrolet has amassed 55 top-five and 106 top-10 finishes in 27 races since Las Vegas Motor Speedway opened in 1998.
· The Southpoint 400 is the fourth race of the Playoffs. Career Chevrolet driver Jimmie Johnson won the fourth race in 2009 and 2016 on the way to claiming the Driver Championship.
· Johnson’s four wins at Las Vegas leads all drivers.
· Erik Jones (22 years, 3 months, 17 days) is the youngest pole winner at Las Vegas.
· Jones led non-Playoff drivers with an eighth-place finish at Bristol.
· Hendrick Motorsports continues to lead the Owner Standings.
· Kyle Larson paces all drivers with 1,905 laps led.
· Tyler Reddick is second among drivers with 99.49% of laps completed (7,256 of 7,293).
· Five Team Chevy drivers have combined for 26 stage wins: Chase Elliott (Daytona RC, Michigan, Daytona2); William Byron (Homestead, Pocono2, Road America); Tyler Reddick (Road America, Indianapolis Road Course x2); Kurt Busch (Nashville Superspeedway, Pocono1, Atlanta2); Kyle Larson (Las Vegas, Atlanta x2, Kansas, Dover x2, Charlotte x3, Sonoma x2, Nashville, Darlington2, Bristol2).

TUNE IN
NBCSN will telecast the 267-lap NASCAR Cup Series South Point 400 at 7 p.m. ET, Sunday, Sept. 26. Live coverage is also on PRN and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Channel 90. NBCSN will also telecast the 201-lap NASCAR Xfinity Series Alsco Uniforms 302 at 7:30 p.m. ET Saturday, Sept. 25. FS1 will telecast the 134-lap NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Victoria’s Voice Foundation 200 presented by Westgate Resorts at 9 p.m. ET, Friday, Sept. 24.

QUOTABLE QUOTES
KYLE LARSON, NO. 5 TARLTON AND SON CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 1st IN STANDINGS
LARSON ON RETURNING TO LAS VEGAS:
“It’s nice going back to a track we’ve won at before. We were really good at Vegas earlier this year, so definitely excited to go back and hoping we have similar speed. The temperature will be much warmer this weekend, so that changes things but our team has been really good at adapting to every situation this year. Hopefully, we can prepare well and have another good car and battle for the win.”

CLIFF DANIELS, CREW CHIEF, NO. 5 TARLTON AND SON CAMARO ZL1 1LE
DANIELS ON HOTTER TEMPERATURES COMPARED TO MARCH:
“It definitely presents a lot of challenges – from the ambient air temperature to the track temperature, and the pace is going to be slower and (tire) fall off is going to be higher. We’re taking all that into consideration and hope we make the right decisions to have a good car – not only for speed but longer into a run when grip is lacking.”

CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 6th IN STANDINGS
“We haven’t had the best results at Las Vegas. The good thing is I feel like we have been fast out there at times. That’s the frustrating thing. Terrible results. I feel like every time I leave out there I’m mad and ready to go home, but I’m looking forward to this trip. Vegas is a place that I don’t have any ill will toward and again, I feel like we have had pace there. We have just really struggled to get the results. Hopefully, this time is a little different. It would be nice to get a win out there. That would be even better.”

ALEX BOWMAN, NO. 48 ALLY CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 7th IN STANDINGS
“Advancing to the Round of 12 was exactly what we needed to do going into the Bristol race. It is obvious we struggled in the first two races in the playoffs, but we went into Bristol with a strategy and Greg (Ives) and the team did a great job with adjustments throughout the race. We fought hard and coming out with a fifth-place finish was big for this Ally team. We want to take Ally as far as we can in these playoffs and putting races together like last weekend will do just that for us.”

“Going to Vegas this weekend is a good track for the 48 team. We have seen success there in the past and earlier this season we had a top-10, if not a top-five run going before we had a tire go down. Our mile and a half program is strong and this Ally team has been working hard on our Chevrolets. This round of the playoffs has a lot of good tracks for us, so we are looking to have strong runs the next three weeks.”

GREG IVES, CREW CHIEF, NO. 48 ALLY CAMARO ZL1 1LE
“Whether it’s a great week or a bad week, you try to look at each week as a new start and have realistic goals in mind. A realistic goal for us at Las Vegas is a win. There are some places you go and try to get top five in stages and then come out with a good finish. With Vegas, I feel like we got great race cars capable of going out there and scoring a lot of stage points and getting the win. Fortunately, or unfortunately, we have teammates who have the same thing. We just got to go out there and execute to the best of our abilities and take advantage when we can. Whether it’s a restart or on pit road or short runs or long runs. We just got to stay focused on that. I feel like we’re capable of winning at any racetrack, but there’s a lot of confidence going back to Vegas.”

WILLIAM BYRON, NO. 24 AXALTA / SERVICE KING CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 8th IN STANDINGS
BYRON ON HOW CRUCIAL LAS VEGAS IS FOR THE NEXT ROUND OF THE PLAYOFFS:
“It’s a great feeling knowing that we had the performance we did in Bristol and were able to advance on. I knew this team was capable of it but to be able to execute it in a Game 7-style situation is even more impressive. Now we’re moving on and turning or focus to the next round. These upcoming tracks are ones that have always been good for us but they also can be wildcards in their own respective, especially Talladega (Superspeedway) and the Charlotte ROVAL. That’s why it’s even more important for us to go to Vegas, execute everything and maximize points. We don’t want to start this round off in a hole like we did the first round. Myself and Rudy (Fugle) would rather play offense through these next three races than have to worry on defending points. Vegas is crucial, in my mind, to determine how you play the rest of the round. Hopefully, we come out with a win and the only points that matter for the next two races are playoff points.”

RUDY FUGLE, CREW CHIEF, NO. 24 AXALTA / SERVICE KING CAMARO ZL1 1LE
FUGLE ON THE MOMENTUM HEADING TO LAS VEGAS:
“We’re super excited to hit the reset button at this stage. Darlington put us behind and we didn’t have a good run at Richmond. It made Bristol way too stressful. I feel like Vegas is really good for us, and this whole round has tracks where we are fast and perform well. I’m really excited about getting a reset, getting a good start at Vegas, competing for a win and maybe not having to worry about the next two (races), so that would be great.”

ERIK JONES, NO. 43 MEDALLION BANK CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 24th IN STANDINGS
THOUGHTS ON GOING BACK TO LAS VEGAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY FOR A SECOND TIME THIS SEASON?
“I’m looking forward to going back to Las Vegas (Motor Speedway). We had a really good run there in the spring with a top-10. Hopefully we can just go back and run as good and improve on it, as well. We’ll see how it goes. Las Vegas is kind of an interesting track. I feel like this race is a lot different than the spring, just because it ends at night and the track changes a lot when it cools down.”
“Overall, I feel good about our package and being able to come back with something that was good in the spring and hopefully just as good when we go back this weekend.”

DANIEL SUAREZ, NO. 99 GOOD SAM CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 25th IN STANDINGS
WHAT IS DANIEL’S AMIGOS?
“Daniel’s Amigos was just an idea. I always wanted to do something special for the Latinos, and was just trying to come up with ways to bring this community to the race track and give them a special, cool experience.

“After several conversations with Coca-Cola and NASCAR, we were able to make it happen in 2019 at Auto Club Speedway in California. The program just grew from there until COVID made us take a break. It has been a while since we have done it, but we are back Sunday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
“It has taken a lot of work by Coca-Cola and NASCAR to make this happen, but I am super excited about it.”

WHAT DO YOU EXPECT ON SUNDAY WITH DANIEL’S AMIGOS?
“We are going to have a few hundred people in the infield of the race track in an open air space where they can have a good time. I am going to be there for 45 minutes, taking pictures, questions and answers and lots of fun. I want them to get to know me better and I want to get to know them. I want to show them how cool NASCAR really is.”

WHY IS THIS PROGRAM IMPORTANT?
“One of the great things I love about our sport is that it is very family oriented. Every time I get the opportunity to do one of these Daniel’s Amigos events, I want to make them feel like they are at home so they will come back and support us every week at the track.”

HOW COOL WOULD IT BE TO WIN SUNDAY?
“Winning Sunday would be amazing. I would invite all 200 Daniel’s Amigos to victory lane to help us celebrate.”

COREY LAJOIE, NO. 7 BUILT BAR CAMARO ZL1 1LE – 29th IN STANDINGS
“Heading into Vegas this weekend with some high hopes. I turn 30 on Saturday, so my friends at Built Bar did a special scheme that makes me look like I’m turning 80. We broke a gear running 16th the first race here, so hopefully we can back that up and have an even better run this time. This track changes drastically from the start of the race in the direct sunlight, to the end of the race when it finishes under the lights. We’ve got some good notes that we’ll apply from previous races & stay on top of the changes to our Built Bar Camaro all night.”

Chevrolet NASCAR Cup Series Statistics

Manufacturers Championships:
Total (1949-2020): 39
First title for Chevrolet: 1958
Highest number of consecutive titles: 13 (2003-15)

Years Won: 1958, 1959, 1960, 1961, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015

Drivers Championships:
Total (1949-2020): 32
First Chevrolet champion: Buck Baker (1957)
Highest number of consecutive titles: 7 (2005-11)
Most Recent: Chase Elliott (2020)

Years Won: 1957, 1960, 1961, 1973, 1976, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2020

Event Victories:
Record for total race wins in single season: 26 (2007)

2021 STATISTICS:
Wins: 14
Poles: 5
Laps Led: 3,300
Top-five finishes: 60
Top-10 finishes: 128
Stage wins: 26 – Chase Elliott (Daytona RC, Michigan, Daytona), William Byron (Homestead, Pocono 2, Road America), Kyle Larson (Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Atlanta x2, Kansas, Dover x2, Charlotte x3, Sonoma x2, Nashville, Darlington, Bristol), Kurt Busch (Nashville, Pocono 1, Atlanta 2), Tyler Reddick (Road America, Indy RC x2)

CHEVROLET IN NASCAR CUMULATIVE STATISTICS:
Total Chevrolet race wins: 809 (1949 to date)
Poles won to date: 722
Laps led to date: 240,005
Top-five finishes to date: 4,125
Top-10 finishes to date: 8,530

Total NASCAR Cup Wins by Corporation, 1949 to Date:

       General Motors: 1,143
       Chevrolet: 809
       Pontiac: 154
       Oldsmobile: 115
       Buick: 65

       Ford: 811                                                         
       Ford: 711
       Mercury: 96
       Lincoln: 4

       Fiat Chrysler Automobiles: 467
       Dodge: 217
       Plymouth: 191
       Chrysler: 59

       Toyota: 160

Team Chevy high-resolution racing photos are available for editorial use.

About Chevrolet
Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world’s largest car brands, available in 79 countries with more than 3.2 million cars and trucks sold in 2020. Chevrolet models include electric and fuel-efficient vehicles that feature engaging performance, design that makes the heart beat, passive and active safety features and easy-to-use technology, all at a value. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at www.chevrolet.com.



The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com.

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