TEAM CHEVY NASCAR RACE ADVANCE: Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course

ONE LAST CHANCE TO ADVANCE

The NASCAR Cup Series (NCS) and NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) are on the brink of the final road course race of the season with the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course set to host the doubleheader race weekend. The 2.32-mile, 17-turn road course located within “America’s Home for Racing” of Charlotte Motor Speedway holds a pivotal position on the postseason schedule as the Round of 12 elimination race for both series. Results from Saturday’s NXS Drive for the Cure 250 presented by BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina and Sunday’s NCS Bank of America ROVAL 400 will determine the eight drivers in each series that will continue in the championship title run.  

 

Chevrolet is the only manufacturer with multiple wins at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course – leading the series with three wins in the NCS and four wins in the NXS. 

Chevrolet at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course:

Chevrolet’s three wins in NASCAR’s premier series at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course all came alongside Hendrick Motorsports. Chase Elliott is the only repeat winner at the circuit – delivering the manufacturer back-to-back victories in 2019 and 2020. Teammate Kyle Larson went on to take Chevrolet to three-straight trips to victory lane with a win at the circuit in 2021. 

 

Chase Elliott, No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet

Chevrolet’s first NCS win at the ROVAL

September 29, 2019

 

Kyle Larson, No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet

Chevrolet’s most recent NCS win at the ROVAL

October 10, 2021

In five NXS appearances at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course, the Chevrolet Camaro SS has collected four victories – all of which have been recorded by the road course phenom AJ Allmendinger (2019, ’20, ’21, ’22). The victory at the circuit one year ago put the Kaulig Racing driver in the record books as the first driver in NXS history to hit a double-digit win count on road courses. Adding in his win at Circuit of The Americas in March and two career NCS road course wins to that list, Allmendinger as recorded 13 career road course victories at the NASCAR national level. 

 

AJ Allmendinger, No. 16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet

Chevrolet’s first NXS win at the ROVAL

September 28, 2019

 

AJ Allmendinger, No. 16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet

Chevrolet’s fourth-straight NXS win at the ROVAL

October 8, 2022

PAST ROAD COURSE WINNERS

Of the 15 active NASCAR Cup Series road course winners, seven come from the Chevrolet camp, including all of the manufacturer’s playoff contenders. Team Chevy’s Kyle Larson and Kyle Busch each have four NCS road course wins on their resumes. One of Larson’s road course wins came at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course in 2021 – the season that led the driver to his first career championship title. The 31-year-old California native enters the weekend in the seventh position in the playoff standings with a 15-point cushion over the cutline. Consistency has been key for Larson on road courses this season – collecting top-10 finishes in three of the last four road course races. While on the outside looking in with a 25-point deficit to the playoff cutline, Busch knows how to get around the 2.32-mile North Carolina road course – recording back-to-back top-five finishes in the series’ past two appearances at the track.

 

Ross Chastain became a winner in NASCAR’s premier series on a road course – claiming his first career NCS victory at Circuit of The Americas in 2022. Sitting in the 11th position and 10-points below the playoff cutline, the 30-year-old Florida native knows how to capitalize on the elimination race pressure. One year ago at the circuit, Chastain and the No. 1 Trackhouse Racing Camaro ZL1 team overcame a broken toe link to salvage enough points to escape elimination – ultimately going on to advance to the Championship Four in his first career playoff appearance.

 

William Byron is the NCS’ most recent road course winner after picking up his first career road course win at Watkins Glen International in August. The 25-year-old has proven to be a championship-caliber driver in the Round of 12, finishing no worse than second in the last two races, including his win at Texas Motor Speedway. Already with a ticket into the Round of Eight, the No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Camaro ZL1 team can focus on maximizing points in Sunday’s event – a task the team has proven to be able to accomplish, earning an average of 39.5 points per race over the past eight events.

 

In the NCS Owner Championship picture, a top-10 finish at Talladega Superspeedway put Chase Elliott and the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Camaro ZL1 team in the fourth position in the points standings and 20-points above the cutline. Two of his series-leading seven road course wins in NASCAR’s premier series have come at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course. A win on Sunday would not only solidify his spot into the Round of Eight for the Owner Championship battle, but also move Elliott to second on the series’ all-time road course wins list, tying NASCAR Hall of Famer Tony Stewart with eight. At the top of that list is career Chevrolet driver Jeff Gordon with nine career NCS road course victories.

 

A look at Team Chevy’s playoff contenders heading into the NASCAR Cup Series Round of 12 Elimination Race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course: 

 

William Byron, No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Camaro ZL1 – 1st in Playoff Standings; clinched spot in Round of Eight with a win

Victories: 6 (series-leading)

Top-Fives: 12

Top-10s: 17

Laps Led: 895

Average Finish: 11.8

Stage Wins: 8 (series-leading)

 

At the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course:

Poles: 1

Top-10s: 2

Average Finish: 14.6

 

Of Note:

·       The 2023 season marks Byron’s fifth consecutive appearance in the NCS playoffs.

·       Byron’s career-best finish in the NCS playoffs came in 2022, finishing the season sixth in the final points standings.

·       Among Byron’s 10 career wins in NASCAR’s premier series, five have come at tracks in the playoffs, including each of the final four races.

·       While he was eliminated in the Round of Eight last season, it’s projected to be his strongest trio of tracks in the post-season – having found victory lane at all three venues (Las Vegas Motor Speedway – March 2023; Homestead-Miami Speedway – Feb. 2021; Martinsville Speedway – April 2022).

·       In the Round of 12, Byron has finished no worse than second, including a win at Texas Motor Speedway. 

 

Kyle Larson, No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Camaro ZL1 – 7th in Playoff Standings; 15 points above the cutline

Victories: 3

Top-Fives: 13 (series-leading)

Top-10s: 15

Laps Led: 898 (series-leading)

Average Finish: 15.2

Stage Wins: 5

 

At the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course:    

Wins: 1

Top-Fives: 1

Top-10s: 1

Average Finish: 18.5

 

Of Note:

·       The 2023 season marks Larson’s seventh appearance in the NCS playoffs.

·       Larson has one NCS Regular Season Championship and one NCS Driver Championship title to his name – both coming in 2021. 

·       The 31-year-old California native has made it to the Championship Four once – the season that delivered the Team Chevy driver his first championship title in NASCAR’s top series (2021). In his other playoff appearances, Larson reached the Round of Eight (2019), Round of 12 (2017, 2018 and 2022) and Round of 16 (2016).

·       During the playoff era (2004-present), the 2021 season saw Larson earn a series-leading five post-season victories – tying the record set by NASCAR Hall of Famer Tony Stewart in 2011.

·       Larson has found victory lane in two of the three tracks in the Round of 12 – both coming in his title-winning season (Texas Motor Speedway and Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course).

·       In the first three races of the 2023 NCS playoffs, Larson finished no worse than fourth – earning an average finish of 2.33. 

 

Ross Chastain, No. 1 Trackhouse Racing Camaro ZL1 – 11th in Playoff Standings; 10 points below the cutline

Victories: 1

Top-Fives: 8

Top-10s: 11

Laps Led: 483

Average Finish: 15.5

Stage Wins: 5

 

At the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course:  

Average Finish: 26.5

 

Of Note:

·       The 2023 season marks Chastain’s second appearance in the NCS playoffs.

·       Chastain’s first time competing in the NCS playoffs came in 2022 – going on to advance to the Championship Four and ultimately leading Team Chevy with a runner-up finish in the final points standings.

·       Chastain became a first-time winner in NASCAR’s premier series on a road course – recorded at Circuit of The Americas in March 2022.

 

Kyle Busch, No. 8 Richard Childress Racing Camaro ZL1 – 12th in Playoff Standings; 26 points below the cutline

Victories: 3

Top-Fives: 8

Top-10s: 15

Laps Led: 235

Average Finish: 15.0

Stage Wins: 2

 

At the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course:   

Top-Fives: 2

Top-10s: 2

Average Finish: 21.2

 

Of Note: 

• In his debut season with Richard Childress Racing and his return to the Bowtie brigade, 2023 marks Busch’s 16th appearance in the NCS playoffs. 

• Busch is one of only two active drivers with multiple championships to his name – taking the title in 2015 and 2019. 

• In Busch’s 63 career wins in NASCAR’s top series, eight of those triumphs have come in the post-season. 

• The 38-year-old Nevada native has made it to the Championship Four on five different occasions – most recently in 2019 en route to his second title. 

 

NXS BACK ON-TRACK FOR FIRST ELIMINATION RACE

The NASCAR Xfinity Series is on the horizon of its first playoff elimination race of the season with Saturday’s 67-lap event completing the driver lineup for the Round of Eight. JR Motorsports’ Justin Allgaier already clinched his berth into the next round with his win in the playoff opener at Bristol Motor Speedway. 

 

With the top-three in the playoff rankings already securing their positions into the Round of Eight, five spots remain up for grabs to continue in the championship title battle. Heading into the elimination race weekend, two Team Chevy drivers sit at a healthy double-digit cushion to the playoff cutline with the NXS regular season champion Austin Hill in the fourth position (+44 points) and NXS rookie Chandler Smith in the fifth position (+32). Sheldon Creed sits seventh (+9) and Daniel Hemric in eighth (+1) to give the Bowtie brand five drivers in the top-eight of the standings.

 

In his first NXS postseason appearance, Big Machine Racing’s Parker Kligerman merely sits on the outside looking in – occupying the ninth spot in the standings with Hemric holding just a single-point edge over Kligerman. Fellow Team Chevy drivers Jeb Burton, Josh Berry and Sam Mayer all faced incidents at Texas Motor Speedway, putting them in the 10th through 12th positions, respectively.

 

Chevrolet heads into the race weekend with three NXS road course wins this season – recorded by Kaulig Racing’s AJ Allmendinger at Circuit of The Americas (March), and back-to-back victories by JR Motorsports’ Sam Mayer at Road America (July) and Watkins Glen International (August). 

 

Corvette Racing’s Jordan Taylor will make his return to the NASCAR national ranks this weekend, getting back behind the wheel of the No. 10 Kaulig Racing Camaro SS for his second stint with the organization. Taylor made his first career start in both the NCS and the NXS this season – filling the seat of the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Camaro ZL1 for an injured Chase Elliott at Circuit of The Americas in March, and joining Kaulig Racing and the No. 10 Kaulig Racing Camaro SS team at Portland International Raceway in June. The four-time IMSA Drivers Champion competes full-time in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship for Corvette Racing, while also playing a key role as the reserve driver and driver coach for the Garage 56 project.

CHEVROLET CONTINUES ‘MAKING STRIDES AGAINST BREAST CANCER’

For the 13th consecutive year, Chevrolet has partnered with the American Cancer Society and its ‘Making Strides Against Breast Cancer’ initiative. The specially-themed pink Camaro ZL1 will serve as the official pace vehicle for three NASCAR Cup Series races during the month of October, with its first on-track appearance coming at Talladega Superspeedway last weekend. The pink Camaro ZL1 will make its return in two weeks at Homestead-Miami Speedway, followed by Martinsville Speedway to close-out the month of October.

 

Featuring the American Cancer Society logo, the pink Camaro ZL1 pace car will raise both money and awareness as it serves as the pace car at each of the three events during the month of October. For every caution lap the pink Camaro ZL1 completes, Chevrolet will make a donation of $350 (up to $50,000) to the American Cancer Society to honor the ‘Making Strides Against Breast Cancer’ initiative.

 

The first of three NASCAR Cup Series events that are part of the initiative took place at Talladega Superspeedway this past weekend. With the pink Camaro ZL1 pace car leading NASCAR’s premier series for 19 laps under caution during Sunday’s YellaWood 500, Chevrolet will contribute $6,650 towards the campaign.

 

BOWTIE BULLETS: 

• Active Chevrolet drivers with a NASCAR Cup Series win at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course:  

Chase Elliott – two wins (2020, 2019)

Kyle Larson – one win (2021)

 

• Chevrolet is the only manufacturer with multiple wins at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course – leading the series with three NASCAR Cup Series wins and four NASCAR Xfinity Series wins at the circuit. 

 

• Chevrolet has made its way to victory lane in 17 of the past 22 NASCAR Cup Series road racing events – dating from Chase Elliott’s victory at Watkins Glen International in August 2019 to William Byron’s victory at Watkins Glen International in August 2023. Within that time span, the manufacturer notched a streak of 11 consecutive road course wins in the series.

 

• Since the debut of the 16-driver playoff field and elimination rounds to the NASCAR Cup Series in 2014, at least five Chevrolet drivers were represented in the playoffs each season.

 

• In 31 points-paying NASCAR Cup Series race this season, Chevrolet continues to lead the series in wins (15), top-fives (66), top-10s (132), stage wins (21) and laps led (2,971). 

 

• Chevrolet leads the series in wins across all three NASCAR national series this season with 15 victories in 31 NASCAR Cup Series races, 14 victories in 28 NASCAR Xfinity Series races and 12 wins in 21 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series races. 

 

• Chevrolet’s series-leading 15 NASCAR Cup Series wins this season have been recorded by drivers from four different Chevrolet teams: Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (JTG Daugherty Racing), Kyle Busch (Richard Childress Racing), William Byron and Kyle Larson (Hendrick Motorsports) and Ross Chastain and Shane van Gisbergen (Trackhouse Racing). 

 

• Chevrolet drivers have recorded 21 of the 62 NASCAR Cup Series stage wins this season: William Byron (eight; series-leading), Ross Chastain (five), Kyle Larson (five), Kyle Busch (two) and Chase Elliott (one). 

 

• Chevrolet continues to sit atop the manufacturer points standings in all three NASCAR national series, leading by 69 points in the NASCAR Cup Series, 73 points in the NASCAR Xfinity Series and 60 points in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. 

 

• Chevrolet has swept the Manufacturer Championships across all three NASCAR national series in a single season four different times (2012, 2005, 1998, 1996).

 

• With its 41 NASCAR Cup Series Manufacturer’s Championships, 33 NASCAR Cup Series Driver’s Championships, and 848 all-time NASCAR Cup Series wins, Chevrolet continues to hold the title of winningest brand in NASCAR Cup Series history.  

FOR THE FANS:

• Fans can visit the Team Chevy Racing Display in the Fan Midway at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Road Course.  

• Fans can check out an assortment of Chevrolet vehicles at the Team Chevy Racing Display including: Blazer RS, 2500 HD Crew HC Diesel, Traverse High Country, Colorado Crew Z71 2.7L, Tahoe RST, Corvette Coupe 3LT Z51, Camaro ZL1, Silverado 1500 Crew ZR2. 

 

Team Chevy Driver Appearances at the Display:

Saturday, October 7

• Sam Mayer: 12 p.m.  

• Stefan Parsons: 12:30 p.m. 

• Justin Allgaier: 1 p.m.

 

Sunday, October 8

• Alex Bowman: 11 a.m.  

• Erik Jones: 11:15 

• Mike Rockenfeller: 12 p.m. 

 

Chevrolet Display Hours of Operation: 

• Saturday, October 7: 9:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. 

• Sunday, October 8: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.  

TUNE IN: 

• NASCAR Cup Series: Bank of America ROVAL 400  

Sunday, October 8, at 2 p.m. ET

(NBC, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90)

 

• NASCAR Xfinity Series: Drive for the Cure 250

presented by BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina

Saturday, October 7, at 3:30 p.m. ET

(NBC, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio Channel 90)

QUOTABLE QUOTES:

ROSS CHASTAIN, NO. 1 WORLDWIDE EXPRESS CAMARO ZL1

How do you feel about your points position going into this weekend at the Roval?

“Well, I think anyone would tell you that they wish they all of the points to advance to the next round, or a win. That’s just not how it goes though. We have to race our race and focus on us. Trackhouse keeps giving me great cars and we’ll go there and turn and see what happens.”

 

How do you look at your race last year at the Roval, compared to this year?

“Last year at the Roval I made a mistake and got us into the wall damaging the car. Obviously, I don’t want to repeat that again because it’s put the team in such a tough spot. Luckily, we had a pretty decent points situation going into the race and some others had trouble. The Roval can be a tough place but I’m going in there focused on driving the car and giving 100 percent every lap.”

 

 

KYLE LARSON, NO. 5 VALVOLINE / HENDRICKCARS.COM CAMARO ZL1

Larson on racing at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL:

“I like the (Charlotte Motor Speedway) ROVAL, I think it’s fun. It’s a sketchy cut off race. I feel like I’ve gotten caught up in more mess there than I have clean finishes. We did win there a couple of years ago, (2021) so I know we can have a good run again this weekend. We have just got to execute a little bit better than I did last year and try not to crash to make it to the next round.”

 

 

CLIFF DANIELS, CREW CHIEF, NO. 5 VALVOLINE / HENDRICKCARS.COM CAMARO ZL1

Daniels on racing at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL:

“We’re going to look at everything we possibly can to make sure that we get the right number of points in the bank to make sure we transfer out of this round (of 12), which of course is very important to us. We also want to make sure we have a fast enough car and try to strategize ourselves correctly to try and get a great finish. We’ve learned a lot this year with road courses and improved our package a good bit. Hopefully, we’ve got a good car and make the right adjustments. There’s so many different things that can play out here with strategy. We’ve got to be smart and know what our objectives are to get the points that we need to transfer (to the Round of 8).”

 

 

KYLE BUSCH, NO. 8 LENOVO CAMARO ZL1

You have scored back-to-back top-five finishes at the Roval. What is the key to running well there? Is it all about grip and maintaining forward drive?

“The key to running well at the Roval is just staying out of trouble and trying to keep your momentum rolling all the way around the racetrack. There are some big braking zones where you can really attack and get a lot of slowing down done in a quick period of time but the infield section has such little grip and is so bumpy that you’re just trying to control the slip and not go too fast and crash. It’s about tiptoeing as much as you can with carrying the right amount of roll speed.”

 

The No. 8 team has shown top-five speed at every road course races this season. How encouraging is that entering the Roval?

“Our team has shown pretty good speed at every road course this season. I feel like that is an encouraging sign going into the Roval. Last year the 8 car should have won the race. It definitely bodes well for us going there and having a strong showing. Looking back at the road course races this year where we had some pretty good speed and good stuff going for us, we just need to qualify well. The Roval is always kind of a crapshoot of a race. Our road course strength this year has been pretty good. We should’ve probably finished third or fourth at Indy and probably fifth or so at Watkins Glen, which would have been top-five in every road race this year.”

 

Since the Roval is a cutoff race in the Playoffs, do you expect more contact and more chaos late in the race? What is the best way to stay out of that mess?   

“I think you expect more contact, more chaos, and more desperation moves at times. I also think there are some payback opportunities where guys will dump guys if they know they’re in a make it or break it situation and they’re on the bubble. That is always kind of on the table as well at the Roval. I’d like to think that we haven’t made many enemies this year so that hopefully won’t be our problem but you never know when you get caught up in someone else’s stuff. It would be nice to just stay out of that.” 

 

 

AJ ALLMENDINGER, NO. 16 CELSIUS CAMARO ZL1

“I’ve always enjoyed the ROVAL. Last year was probably our fastest road course race we have had, leading a lot of laps, and having a top-five finish. I think from the things we are doing and building off the speed we had in Watkins Glen, the ROVAL is a racetrack that if we execute and do everything right, we can have a real shot to win the race. I can’t wait to get there and focus on trying to go steal a win.”

 

 

MIKE ROCKENFELLER, NO. 42 SUNSEEKER RESORTS CAMARO ZL1

This is your last scheduled Cup Series race for this year, so what are some of the goals that you would like to accomplish before the end of the event on Sunday?

“You know, obviously, we had two races and this one is going to be my last one in Cup this year, so I definitely want to do well. I think in the last two, we had some issues on pit lane, so hopefully this time it will be clean, and that means I think we have a shot to do well. We were able to finish 19th last time even with a slow pit stop, so if we improve slightly I think we can fight for a top-15 or a top-10 hopefully. That’s what my goal is, but on the other hand, I know that this is a critical race in the championship for many guys. So I want to do my thing, and always want to win as a driver and for the team as well; but of course I also don’t want to spoil anybody’s race for the championship. We need to be careful, and smart, and hopefully take advantage of a few things so we can make it a really good one. I will enjoy it and am motivated as always, and am looking forward to drive. I raced there last year, so I know the circuit, and I will be ready to go this weekend.”

 

 

ERIK JONES, NO. 43 ALLEGIANT CAMARO ZL1

“It’s always nice to have a home race, being at the ROVAL this weekend and not having to travel is good for everybody. Being able to head over there and give it a shot is comforting. Our road course stuff has been one of our biggest struggles this year, but we have been working hard to improve every time to get where we want to be. It’s great to have Mike Rockenfeller back as well. I think he has done a really good job for us here on these road courses, helping us out, getting us better, and showing us what we can work on to improve. So, I am excited to have him in the car again and hope to finish out strong on the last road course for this year.”

GM PR