CONCORD, N.C. – Chase Elliott has already stood in Victory Lane at the Brickyard 400 before, however, not as a driver.
Elliott’s father, Bill Elliott, won at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2002, leading 93 laps en route to the victory.
Elliott was at the track that day and accompanied his parents to Victory Lane for the celebrations.
“It’s definitely a special place,” Elliott said. “I think that will forever make Indy special for me.”
The young Elliott was only six years old at the time, so he acknowledged that his memory of that day isn’t as ample as he would have hoped.
“I remember being in Victory Lane and going up on the elevator they have there in Victory Lane for the cars, so that was really one of my only memories of that day,” the driver said.
He also remembers his father passing for the lead with less than 13 laps remaining in the race.
“Other than Rusty Wallace finishing second, I don’t remember a whole lot about the day other than they were really fast that weekend,” said Elliott. “I don’t know if he was on the pole or he sat on the front row but he qualified really well too so they had it going.”
Another memory from that day at Indianapolis was the brick-kissing tradition, which the six-year-old Elliott refused to partake in.
“I didn’t kiss the bricks, I wouldn’t do it,” said Elliott, chuckling. “I would not kiss the bricks. I don’t know why that was but all the pictures of them kissing the bricks I was standing in the background. I didn’t want anything to do with that.”
Elliott will return to Indianapolis Motor Speedway this week to make his second NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start at the 2.5-mile oval. Last year, Elliott took the green flag in 28th and gained 10 positions before taking the checkered flag in 18th.
This year, he’ll hope to land himself in Victory Lane a second time and this time, he will definitely kiss the bricks.
To hear Elliott discuss growing up in NASCAR, earning his pilot’s license, as well as his Hendrick Motorsports team, check out the most recent NASCAR on NBC Podcast here.