IN A win reminiscent of his father’s 1985 comeback at Talladega, Chase Elliott recovered from a one-lap, lucky dog ineligibility penalty to take the checkered flag in the Beau Slocumb Memorial 208 Presented by US Auto Sales at Gresham Motorsports Park on Saturday, April 7.
After starting on the pole, Elliott brought out the caution on lap 92 after stopping in turn four due to a broken sway bar arm. Once the caution flag flew, he got back under way and went to the pits. The track issued a penalty to Elliott for bringing out the caution flag, costing him a lap and making him ineligible for the lucky dog pass, which could have helped him get back on the lead lap.
The young driver persevered and raced his way back to the lead lap and then up through the field not once, but twice, to get the win.
“I don’t know how we did that. I told the crew whenever the sway bar broke, I wasn’t going to give up until the checkered flag waved,” said Elliott. “You had to run as hard as you could run. I was out of breath because I had to run so hard. Fortunately, we had a long green flag run to where we could get our lap back.”
The entire 208-lap race was action packed as many big names were involved in multi-car wrecks early on including last year’s race winner Bubba Pollard who lost his motor on lap 30. The oil from the blown engine caused Pollard to spin in turn one and eight other cars were collected, most sustaining heavy damage.
Willie Allen took the $2,500 for winning the first 100-lap segment of the race but he had problems during the second segment, which cost him multiple laps. Elliott won the final two segments.
This race was an emotional one for everyone involved as it is in remembrance of local racer Beau Slocumb who lost his life to cancer last year at the age of 26.
“This one is for Beau Slocumb,” Elliott said in Victory Lane. “We lost a heck of a racer last year, but he’s here with us in our hearts.”
T.J. Reaid finished second behind Elliott followed by Augie Grill, R.S. Senter and Gus Dean.