CHEVROLET NCS AT CHARLOTTE: Chase Elliott Media Availability Quotes

MAY 25, 2024

 Chase Elliott, Driver of the No. 9 NAPA Patriotic Camaro ZL1 and the No. 17 HENDRICKCARS.COM Camaro SS, met with the media in advance of racing double duty in the NASCAR Cup Series and NASCAR Xfinity Series at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Media Availability Quotes:

Talk about running double duty… not the same extent of Kyle Larson, but in the NASCAR Xfinity Series and NASCAR Cup Series. Hope helpful is it or are you just doing it for the fun of it?

“Yeah, basically it was as simple as – Chad (Knaus) came to us over the winter last year and said that they were going to likely be keeping the No. 17 Xfinity car going for another handful of races this year, and we’re probably going to start incorporating some more ovals into that, so that was appealing to me. They just kind of sent out – hey, these are the races we’re thinking.. what do you guys have interest in? And if any of our interested races clashed, then we would figure out how to sort them out. We were all pretty laid back about it. It wasn’t a huge thing. so just the way it worked out.

Charlotte (Motor Speedway) fit my schedule and it fit their schedule. I wanted to get some more laps here, and I felt like it would be a good weekend to do that. It was on the calendar, so it worked out really well. I’m excited about it.”

Greg Ives, putting him in a position where he can build that team, but also mentor people who come in different areas of the team and try to get them Cup ready for Hendrick Motorsports. How important is it to have somebody like Greg in that role?

“Yeah, I think it’s extremely important. You touched on it, but that’s the biggest piece of doing the No. 17 car in-house.. it is challenging to make sure that our team members have the proper amount of reps at the racetrack. During a practice environment, it goes by really quick; performing to the expectation and to the level of what a Cup crew chief expects of their guys. It’s just hard to get those guys reps if they’re new, or if we have someone come off the road or any personnel change. So it’s a really good opportunity for Hendrick Motorsports to kind of groom their own people in their own way; have people ready in case maybe a guy misses a weekend. Then you have somebody that can jump in that has a little bit of experience; know what to expect and just how to execute a proper practice and things like that. So that’s really been the biggest reason why I think it’s continued, and ultimately I think is a really good decision for the company to make sure – not just the drivers getting some extra reps here and there, but it’s also important for the crew members to, as well.”

NASCAR fined Ricky Stenhouse Jr. $75,000 for the fight, the most they’ve ever fined a driver…

“$75,000? Wow.. I heard he got fined, but I didn’t know it was $75,000.

Yeah, $75,000.. I was going to ask if you thought it was appropriate. I don’t know if you’ve thought about it much, but do you think that’s a lot?

“Yeah, that’s a lot.. that’s a lot of money. That seems wild to me.

Yeah, that seems like a lot for that situation. You’re going to fine him, but you’re going to promote with it.. like what are we doing? That’s a little strange to me. That’s just the first thought that comes to my mind, is that’s a lot of money to fine a guy. It’s not OK, but we’re going to blast it all over everything to get more clicks. I don’t really agree with that.”

You haven’t been able to do much Xfinity Series racing over the last couple of years. What do you enjoy about being able to take a step back into the series that kind of launched you and your career into the Cup level?

“Yeah, for sure. Those two years, 2014 and 2015.. particularly 2014, was a really big year for me. Just the way the timing all worked out and whatnot. It was really last minute that we even raced full-time that year. There was a really good shot that we were just going to run five or six (races), and I would have been thrilled with that. All the pieces of the puzzle fit together at the right time with NAPA and everything else. To your point, yes – two extremely important years for my career, particularly 2014. I kind of felt like that was my opportunity to either do something or not, especially when it became a full-time season versus five or six races that we had talked about doing.”

Denny Hamlin recently said that he’d rather win a lot of races and no championships, rather than a few races and championships. You’ve done both – you’ve won a lot of races and you’ve won a championship. Which of those two elements of the sport are you most proud of – the wins or the championship?

“That’s a good question. I think it depends on where you’re at in your life, honestly. Like when I get done racing and I look back, I’m going to be proud that we won a championship. I’m also proud of the wins, for sure. But I think having a lot of wins means that you’ve had a lot of good days spread out through a long period of time. So I just think that general satisfaction that you get from a race win or a day going your way – if those wins are in large quantities like that, I think ultimately that means that you’ve had a lot of good days leaving the racetrack and a lot of satisfaction in performance, in yourself and your team.

I can understand his argument on that, for sure, because races happen weekly. A championship only happens one time a year. I think the championship thing is something that probably sticks with you more after you get done and that type of gratification. But certainly, being in the moment and being in the heat of the battle, I think winning a lot can certainly make your overall satisfaction of how you’re doing with your job more enjoyable and happier.”

With Kyle Larson’s experience in Indy, how closely have you been following what he’s been doing and how the No. 5 team has been reacting to it, as well? How tuned-in will you be on Sunday as that race is going on?

“Yeah, I’ve tried to keep up, for sure. It’s been fun to watch, what I have been able to keep up with. It seems like they’ve been doing a great job at Indy. Obviously I work closely with Cliff (Daniels) – I hear a lot from him and whatnot, way more than the INDYCAR side, so I’m hearing most of it from him. He’s an extremely well-prepared guy. I know he’s going to do his part to make sure his side of the picture goes really well. So I wouldn’t be concerned about that at all, if I was Kyle (Larson) or anybody else.

But yeah, I think they seem to be handling it all extremely well. It seems like just the logistics, the plans and the backup plans and all that stuff with the aviation group and everything else; they’re all just top-notch people. At Hendrick Motorsports, Rick (Hendrick) does a really good job of choosing the people that work in different departments. Everyone is excited about it, and I think it’s really cool for everyone involved. Everyone is playing a role in making it happen. It’s such a team effort to make sure he can get back and forth and do all the right things. I think any time that you have an opportunity like that to tie-in more people that already work at the company, I think is super healthy because it gives people the opportunity to be a part of something that they might not normally be on a given weekend, which is fun.”

About Chevrolet

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


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