SONOMA, Calif. – Sunday afternoon, Chase Elliott added to his road-course resume by leading laps at Sonoma Raceway. It marked his seventh consecutive race with at least one lap led, the longest active streak in the NASCAR Cup Series.
An early pit-road strategy allowed the driver of the No. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 to open Stage 2 as the race leader, but the driver fell back to second place after being passed by Martin Truex Jr., who ultimately won the race.
“Our NAPA Chevy was good,” Elliott said. “I hated I gave Martin the lead there. It was just a mistake on my part. I needed to keep control of the reins – that was an important point.”
Still, in the final segment, Elliott was able move back into the runner-up position and maintained a top-three spot while battling to track down the leaders.
With less than 30 laps to go, however, the driver headed to pit road after reporting an oil pressure issue.
“We lost oil pressure but there is no oil leaking, so it must have been a belt,” Elliott suspected. “Obviously when that happens, you’re not getting oil, so things are going to not work when they’re not being loosened up and have oil to work with.”
Despite the issue that left him with a 37th-place result, Elliott was proud of the No. 9 team’s effort and reiterated his confidence in what the organization brings to the track every week.
“I’ve been with Hendrick Motorsports for a number of years now running their engines and I think this is the second time we ever broke one,” Elliott said. “So, I’ll take those odds all day long.”