NASCAR Sports Update: Elliott holds off Hamlin for historic Daytona win (8/16/20) By: Josh Scott
Updated: Aug 17, 2020
Chase Elliott beat Denny Hamlin by a mere .202 seconds to win the Go Bowling 235 in the first-ever Daytona International Speedway Road Course race on Sunday. The win is Elliott's second of 2020, and his eighth career win in the Cup Series. The son of Hall of Fame driver Bill Elliott also scores his third straight road-course victory, after winning at both Watkins Glen International and the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval last season.
Martin Truex Jr finished third, Jimmie Johnson fourth and Chris Buescher fifth. Clint Bowyer, Kaz Grala, William Byron, Joey Logano, and Michael McDowell rounded out the top 10. Grala filled in for Austin Dillon after testing positive for COVID-19 on Saturday. Dillon becomes the second NASCAR driver to come down with the coronavirus, next to Jimmie Johnson.
Elliott won Stage One while Hamlin went on to capture the Stage Two win.
After the final round of green-flag pit stops, Elliott pulled out to a sizable nine-second lead over Hamlin and looked to have had the win in hand. After Kyle Busch cut down a right-rear tire, however, one final restart followed, with four laps to go. On the restart, Elliott raced away from the field quickly. Hamlin refused to go down without a fight but was ultimately unable to pass the Dawsonville, GA native.
Three races remain until NASCAR's Playoffs begin. William Byron continues to hold on to the 16th and final spot to transfer, but only by 25 points over seven-time champ Jimmie Johnson. Erik Jones remains within striking distance of the two teammates, just 35 points back.
NASCAR travels to Dover International Speedway next for the season's third double-header weekend. The Monster Mile will feature a Saturday and a Sunday race. Both races start at 4 p.m. on NBCSN.