Chase Elliott, Kurt Busch wreck with 85 laps to go in Las Vegas
Chase Elliott and hometown driver Kurt Busch wrecked on a restart with 85 laps to go at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Busch and Elliott restarted in the top 10 following a caution for a Jamie McMurray accident.
As the field came around to complete the first lap under green, Busch’s No. 41 Ford drifted up the track and into Elliott’s No. 9 Chevrolet, forcing it into the wall.
Busch’s car then turned nose first into the wall.
The wreck results in Elliott and Busch’s second DNF in the season’s first three races. They wrecked in the Daytona 500.
“I was running the low groove and it just stepped out on me,” Busch told Fox. “I wasn’t even trying to fill the hole or go 100 percent. I had it at 90 percent and I knew Chase was going to be on my outside and it was just that quick. We were back there in the dirty air, but Turn 4, I always know it is slick and I wasn’t even pushing through there and it stepped out on me. Ruined his day, ruined my day. I hate it for all the Chase Elliott fans and the Kurt Busch fans and my hometown fans. I wasn’t even pushing hard. I knew we had one more stop and then we were going to go. It just stepped out on me. It is ridiculous.”
The accident continued a bad day for Hendrick Motorsports. At the time of the crash, Elliott was the only HMS driver on the lead lap. Jimmie Johnson received the free pass as a result of the caution.
“I think (Busch) just got loose on the bottom there and I was unfortunately the guy that was up top,” Elliott told Fox. “We were just trying to be solid today and make the most of what our NAPA Camaro had and I thought we were doing a pretty good job of that kind of like what we did last week. ... Kind of in the wrong spot in the wrong situation.”
Elliott finished 34th and Busch placed 35th.
Rookie William Byron finished 27th, four laps down. Alex Bowman finished two laps down in 16th.
Johnson started the race in the rear of the field after his No. 48 Chevrolet failed pre-qualifying inspection three times. That resulted in his car chief being ejected from the event.
Johnson finished 12th, a lap down.