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Comments from the eliminated drivers

Photo by Kyle Stephens/TRE

At the conclusion of the Bank of America ROVAL 400 at the Charlotte Road Course Sunday, four NASCAR Cup Series drivers were eliminated from championship contention.

Below is a breakdown of how each fared.

No. 24 William Byron

Photo by Kyle Stephens/TRE

Byron started the race ranked 11th in driver’s standings, 44 points below the cutline.

Byron started 11th, earning a total of four stage points and leading the most laps (30). He ultimately finished the race in 11th.

“We had a really good car in two of the three races in this Round and today we had an amazing car, probably capable of winning, but just didn’t have things go our way there,” Byron said.

“At that point when I got up to third, my tires were shot, and there were only two laps to go. I wasn’t going to win, and made a mistake to not finish third, but at that point I was just mad.”

No. 4 Kevin Harvick

Photo by Kyle Stephens/TRE

Harvick started the race with a nine-point deficit to the cutline, ninth in points.

Harvick started the race in seventh place.

The 2014 series champion placed inside the Top-10 in both stages, netting nine points. However, a crash on lap 98 ended Harvick’s race and chances at advancing to the Round of 8.

“I just pushed it in there too hard and I got the tire locked up and I couldn’t stop it once I felt like I needed to go to get a couple spots back that I had lost, and I got the left-front locked up and I couldn’t get it to turn,” Harvick said of his 33rd-place finish.

Since the adoption of the current NASCAR Playoffs format, 2021 marks the first time Harvick did not advance to the Round of 8 as a championship contender.

No. 20 Christopher Bell
Bell entered the race 28 points behind the cutoff 11th in points.

Despite a fourth-place start, Bell did not net any stage points.

Bell, the Daytona Road Course winner, finished eighth.

“You have to be great every time you come to the race track,” Bell said. “We have a lot of stuff we can clean up and our potential is a lot better that what we’re performing at right now. I have high hopes moving on in my NASCAR career and hopefully I get more opportunities at that.”

No. 48 Alex Bowman

Photo by Kyle Stephens/TRE

Bowman entered the race 52 points behind the cutoff 12th in points.

After starting 12th, Bowman picked up two stage points with a ninth-place finish in Stage 2.

Bowman finished in 10th.

“I’m glad we got a top 10,” Bowman said. “I’m exhausted. I’m just mentally drained after the roller coaster that was. But it’s good to get a top 10. I wish we had more.”

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Dominic Aragon View All

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