Sport NASCAR America: Is Chase Elliott the new face of the sport?

19:26  10 august  2018
19:26  10 august  2018 Source:   nbcsports.com

Chase Elliott wins at Watkins Glen

  Chase Elliott wins at Watkins Glen Chase Elliott has won the NASCAR Cup race at Watkins Glen, holding off Martin Truex Jr in a scintillating finish.Truex ran second to Elliott for the entire final stage before beginning a steady close. It was a two-car race as the rest of the field was more than 11 seconds back.

Elliott started his inaugural Cup season in 2016 with a bang taking the pole at the Daytona 500 and then raced his way into the Chase for the NASCAR Cup as only the third rookie to ever make the sport ’s playoffs.

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  NASCAR America: Is Chase Elliott the new face of the sport? © Getty Images

Is Chase Elliott poised to become the face of NASCAR in the wake of his first Cup win?

That question was raised on NASCAR America.

SiriusXM NASCAR Radio’s Pete Pistone joined the show Thursday to discuss it with Kyle Petty and Carolyn Manno.

“Chase Elliott’s win on Sunday, Carolyn, I think was probably one of if not the most popular win we’ve had with the fans in some time,” Pistone said. “So the conversation started to shift to, is he going to be the person to represent this sport, not just inside the NASCAR universe, but outside the NASCAR universe?”

Pistone said he doesn’t think there is a clear face of the sport at the moment.

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“A lot of other fans thought maybe the face of NASCAR isn’t just one person, it’s three people, the ‘Big 3’ of Martin Truex, Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch,” Pistone said.

Petty said that Elliott’s surge in popularity after the retirement of Dale Earnhardt Jr. shows how much NASCAR is still “tied to our old fans in some strange way.

“We’ve got guys with tons of personality … (like) Bubba Wallace, guys on and off the race track, who really haven’t done a lot yet,” Petty said. “Chase, he’s won a championship in the Xfinity Series and yes he’s won a Cup race. One single Cup race. So do you become the face of NASCAR with one single cup race? …  How do you get to that point where a guy who wins one race is now the future of the sport?”

Watch the video for more.

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Tiger Woods gave golf a much-needed boost with his run at the PGA Championship last week. It helped put the sport back on the national stage. NASCAR feels it had a similar moment when Chase Elliott finally won his first race earlier this month at Watkins Glen. "That really was a big moment," said Kurt Busch, among a few drivers on hand for a tire test at Texas Motor Speedway recently."It's nice to see the kid win and put it all together for a full race. It was overdue. We know he's got the talent. He's got the pedigree. He's with a great team. A story like him is our main guy.

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