Three drivers score career-high finishes at Bristol

Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

Chase Elliott leads Chris Buescher at Bristol Motor Speedway Sunday.



By Dominic Aragon
Editor
April 18, 2016
daragon@theracingexperts.net


Three competitors in Sunday’s Food City 500 recorded their career-best Sprint Cup Series finishes.

Rookie-of-the-year contender Chase Elliott scored his second top-five finish of 2016 at Bristol Motor Speedway. The race also marked the fifth time he was the highest finishing rookie this season.

“We started a little slow, didn't qualify as well as we'd like to on Friday but I thought we hit on a couple things yesterday in final practice that fortunately carried over to today and was able to kind of work our way up through there,” he said.

Elliott. Who ran as high as second place, ran as low as 33rd and commented on falling two laps down.

“Hate to have a loose wheel, but guys did a good job overcoming that having a fast pit under green only losing two laps. That was big to keep us in contention there and try to get back on the lead lap. Definitely a long afternoon, but had a fast car, and that was the biggest thing that kept us alive.”

Photo by Brian DeGruchy/TheRacingExperts.com
Matt DiBenedetto signs autographs for fans at Phoenix International Raceway.
Elliott climbed two positions in driver’s standings and will enter next Sunday’s race at Richmond twelfth in the standings, 27 points above the Chase cutline.

Second-year BK Racing driver Matt DiBnedetto finished inside the top-ten for the first time in his career Sunday. His sixth place effort was also the highest finish for the team since its inception.

“I’m sorry I’m so speechless,” he said post-race. “Just I’m so thankful to everybody on this team... These guys, man, that’s unbelievable for a team like to us to be growing this much and for us to get a sixth-place run. I’m sorry I’m so emotional, it’s just this is like a win for us.”

Previously, DiBenedetto’s best Sprint Cup finish came at Talladega in May of 2015 where he finished 18th. The 24-year-old driver will enter next weekend’s race 30th in driver standings, a gain of four positions, 70 points behind the Chase cutoff.

Additionally, rookie-of-the-year candidate Jeffrey Earnhardt posted a career-best day at Bristol.

Starting 37th, also a career-high, Earnhardt ran as high as 29th en route to a 32nd place outing.

Earnhardt has competed in five of eight Sprint Cup races in 2016 and sits 38th in driver’s standings.
Which driver impressed you most Sunday at Brisol?
Chase Elliott (4th)
Matt DiBenedetto (6th)
Jeffrey Earnhardt (32nd)
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