Chase Elliott left Charlotte Motor Speedway victorious and $100,000 richer after beating Kyle Busch by 0.627 seconds. Elliott, piloting the No. 24 GMS Racing Chevrolet and making his first appearance in the series since 2017 at Martinsville Speedway, led the field for 47 circuits. The Dawsonville, GA. native started the night 26th on the leaderboard.
“He was a little better than I was there at the end,” Elliott said after the race. “I got tight. I don’t think we adjusted enough on that last pit stop (on Lap 89). I was a little scared. I really didn’t know exactly what I needed or what these things did as time went on.
Busch, leading 25 circuits of the North Carolina Education Lottery 200, left Charlotte Motor Speedway in the runner-up spot. The Las Vegas native started 16th and finished stage one in 14th and stage two in fifth. Busch acknowledged an issue post-race with the right-front stopper from the get-go.
“It doesn’t help showing up to the race track with broke parts on your truck,” said Busch. “That was a problem from the get-go. Didn’t have our right-front stopper right so we were all over the splitter. We came in and didn’t know it was broke so had to fix it with a make shift piece and it was way too high. Then we tried to fix it and just never was right. We were out in left field the whole night. Never really had a great feel for the truck or a great driving truck. Just salvaged what I could.”
Elliott, claiming the $100,000 bounty by beating Busch, took home his third career truck series victory in his 13th career start. He has nine top five and 11 top 10 finishes in the series.
“It was a lot of fun,” Elliott said. “First off, a thanks to (sponsors) iRacing and Hooters, Chevrolet and GMS (Racing) for letting me come do this. (The truck) was really good from the get-go, for having no laps (of practice). The splitter was where it needed to be.”
Busch earned his 100th career top five finish at Charlotte and leaves the 1.5-mile oval with his 121st top 10. He has 57 career victories in the series.
Zane Smith rounded out the top three finishers on Tuesday at Charlotte. The California driver scored his third career top five finish -- bettering his fifth-place finish at Gateway Motorsports Park in 2018.
Brett Moffitt and Sheldon Creed rounded out the top five.
John Hunter Nemechek, Johnny Sauter, Ty Majeski, Austin Hill and Ben Rhodes rounded out the top 10.
Ross Chastain, winner of stage one and the ninth-place finisher of stage two, took home the 11th position.
John Hunter Nemechek faced adversity late into the race as he and Todd Gilliland brought out the final caution on lap 103 in turn four. Nemechek, piloting the No. 8 Ford, tangled with Todd Gilliland with 31 circuits to go. The North Carolina native continued to finish sixth while Gilliland finished 37th because of the incident.
A competition caution and stage breaks resulted in the first three stoppages of the night. Four trucks tangled on the frontstretch on lap 81 involving Stewart Friesen, Brennan Poole, Jesse Iwuji and Tyler Ankrum. Poole tangled with Natalie Decker two laps after going green following the four-truck incident in turn three on lap 88. The sixth yellow of the night involved debris on the frontstretch.
The series will head to Atlanta Motor Speedway for a 200-mile event on June 6th. The event will take place at 1:00 p.m. ET. on FOX Sports 1 and MRN Radio.