Blaney, Elliott post lead lap finishes
Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images
Chase Elliott sits in his Sprint Cup Series car at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
By Jonathan Fjeld
July 27, 2015
Of the five drivers who made their first start at Indianapolis Sunday, two managed to finish on the lead lap.
Nose-to-tail is the way two drivers started their day, Chase Elliott starting 28th and Ryan Blaney 30th respectively.
After a cycle of green flag pit stops, Blaney found himself in 21st, while Elliott was in 25th.
As the race progressed, both drivers cracked the top-ten and maintained top-25 positions most the rest of the race.
On the final restart, a green-white-checkered finish, Blaney restarted 11th and Elliott restarted 16th. When the crossed the yard of bricks for the final time, Blaney was in the 12th finishing position and Elliott was 18th. After the race, Blaney spoke to ESPN about his debut performance.
“It was a good run for us,” he said. “I wish things played out a little better for us in the end, but it wasn't too bad when we finally got track position. That was so huge today. I thought when we got a little bit of clean air, we were pretty good. But it was hard to get that.”
In Blaney's post-race talks with the media, a reporter brought up the final lap of Saturday's XFINITY Series race, where a slight mishap in turn 2 cost him the win. Blaney responded by saying that he “forgot about it”.
No post-race comments were available from Elliott after the race, but he will be making his next attempt in the Southern 500 at Darlington.
Darlington will also be the next appearance of the low-downforce package raced at Kentucky. It will also be another first at a historic track for Elliott, as he will make his first Darlington start in the Cup Series.
Blaney’s 12th place effort was both the driver’s best run and first lead lap finish in the Sprint Cup Series since a fourth place finish at Talladega in May.