CONCORD, N.C. -- Chase Elliott has one thing on his mind this weekend: to win.
The driver of the No. 9 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 1LE was on the wrong end of an accident Wednesday night after Kyle Busch clipped him in the waning laps of the 310-mile race at Darlington. Elliott, who was in second place and making a push to take the lead, was knocked out of contention.
Busch apologized and said he made a mistake, but it resulted in Elliott placing 38th.
“I get that mistakes happen. That’s part of life and I get it,” Elliott said Friday. "He’s just not a guy that makes many mistakes, so for me to be on the poor end of a rare mistake on his end is, at the end of the day, unfortunate for me and my team."
Elliott said there has never been an issue between him and Busch and lauded the two-time champion for being a talented driver. He added that it's still a bitter pill to swallow since he had fresher tires than the leader.
"The whole reason Wednesday was as unfortunate as it was is because we were battling for a win,” Elliott said. "I guess the bottom line is to try and put ourselves in position to win more, and that’s a good problem to have. That’s my goal."
Elliott has already left the Darlington misfortune in the rearview mirror and his focus has shifted to Sunday’s race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. The 24-year-old driver is looking for his first win of the season along with his first victory at the 1.5-mile oval track.
Despite the challenges that come with no practice sessions and spending just one day at the speedway, Elliott said those changes have made racing more exciting for him.
"We can still put on a really good show," he said.
As for a retaliation against Busch, Elliott said that isn’t what’s on his mind heading into the weekend.
"For me, I just want to go win,” he said. "I thought we had a really nice opportunity to try and grab a win there on Wednesday. That’s my goal. I want nothing more than to just go run well and try to put ourselves in position to win a lot of races, and we’ve been lucky to have been in a few positions this year.
"We’re fast enough to win. It just hasn’t worked out. I’m hopeful that our day will come."