Christopher Bell escapes!
Christopher Bell was supposed to win in Charlotte, Christopher Bell won and ran away! The Joe Gibbs Racing driver will be in the third round of the playoffs.
Arriving at Charlotte Motor Speedway for the Bank of America ROVAL 400, Christopher Bell had only one thing in mind, victory. Indeed, only victory could qualify him for the last round of the playoffs.
The Joe Gibbs Racing driver, still placed during the race, took the gamble of returning to the pits at the end of the race during the penultimate neutralization, a choice that paid off.
When I got to turn 1, my spotter did an amazing job. I am very proud of all the work done by the team. In a race, the fastest car does not always win. The second round of the playoffs was clearly the most dangerous with Talladega and Roval.
On the outside line alongside Kevin Harvick during the final restart of the race, Christopher Bell took advantage of his new tires to go into the infield. From then on the dice were cast, no one could catch Christopher Bell. Kevin Harvick was able to save his second place, but looked more behind him than in front of him.
Kyle Busch, with a tough car to control, brings home a third place ahead of AJ Allmendinger, Justin Haley, Chris Buescher, Bubba Wallace, Tyler Reddick, Chase Briscoe and Austin Dillon.
Six laps from the checkered flag, Chase Elliott had nearly four seconds over AJ Allmendinger and had the race won without incident. But lo and behold, motorsport is unpredictable and a billboard came onto the track forcing the officials to pull out the yellow flag.
Christopher Bell is one of the drivers who go through the pit lane to put on new tyres. During the follow-up, the contacts are numerous. At the first corner, in the infield, at the chicane of the back straight, there is no shortage of incident zones. While there had been no yellow flag during the first hundred laps of the race (excluding the end of the segment – editor’s note), a new yellow flag was waved, this time for a piece of curb missing following the restart. The red flag even came out for six minutes to fix.
During the’Overtime it’s the rat race. Kyle Larson, relegated several laps after contact with the wall, no longer has his destiny in hand. Austin Cindric, released by Erik Jones in the rear chicane of the penultimate lap, allows the defending champion to stay alive in these playoffs, but it was without counting on the performance of Chase Briscoe, who will be able to win the positions needed to make the difference in the final lap.
As a result, the defending champion is out, as are his teammate Alex Bowman, Daniel Suárez and Austin Cindric.
The Bank of America 400 ROVAL in brief
Segment 1: Joey Logano, William Byron, Daniel Suárez, Ryan Blaney, Austin Cindric, Kyle Larson, Chase Briscoe, Denny Hamlin, Tyler Reddick and AJ Allmendinger
Segment 2: Ross Chastain, Harrison Burton, Kyle Larson, AJ Allmendinger, Tyler Reddick, Daniel Suárez, Joey Logano, Chase Briscoe, Ryan Blaney and Chase Elliott
Next week, the third and final round of the playoffs will begin at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Chase Elliott will get there as the championship leader. In contention for the title, there will be two drivers from Hendrick Motorsports (Chase Elliott and William Byron), two drivers from Joe Gibbs Racing (Christopher Bell and Denny Hamlin), two drivers from Team Penske (Joey Logano and Ryan Blaney ), a Trackhouse Racing driver (Ross Chastain) and a Stewart-Haas Racing driver (Chase Briscoe).