What is Chase Elliott's 'key ingredient' for 2022 NASCAR playoffs success?

NASCAR Cup Series Bank of America Roval 400
Chase Elliott pits during the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series Bank of America Roval 400 at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

The 2022 NASCAR Cup Series' regular-season champion and one of the favorites to win this year's ultimate prize, Chase Elliott is a driver who seems to be on top of his game this year.

The #9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 driver has taken trips to Victory Lane throughout the season when it has mattered while keeping up consistent points finishes during the year as well. Sitting in first place on the driver's standings table going into the first Round of 8 race, Elliott seems to be pretty much in control of his championship challenge.

This Sunday's South Point 400 will see drivers battle it out on the 1.5-mile-long intermediate track that is Las Vegas Motor Speedway, with two more races to go before the Championship 4. Chase Elliott goes into this weekend with 5 previous victories to his name, the highest of any driver this season.

With three prior top-5 finishes at the track, the Dawsonville, Georgia native touched upon what his key ingredient is behind success in the sport. He said:

“Our key ingredient is just our team. I feel like I have a great team around me. I’ve always felt that way and they make me look a lot better than I am very, very, very often. I’m super appreciative of them, the way that they go about their business, the way they let me go about my business and let me be me. We just focus on the things that we can excel at and the things that make us good.”
Live from Las Vegas.

With Chase Elliott sitting 31 points above the cutoff line going into this weekend, the 26-year-old can afford to head into Sunday's race without too much pressure on his shoulders.

Chase Elliott's crew chief on the team's return to Las Vegas Motor Speedway

Going into the first Round of 8 race this Sunday, Alan Gustafson, Chase Elliott's crew chief at Hendrick Motorsports, elaborated on how the #9 crew can improve on their last visit to the track. With more know-how on how to set up the new Next Gen car for the intermediate track, Gustafson seemed confident heading into the 400-mile-long race and said:

“This week our goal is to just kick off this round with a strong finish. If we do that, it will be an improvement on the opening races of the first two rounds. That’s what’s plagued us so far in these playoffs. The first time we went to Vegas, we tried something that we felt was good but as the year has gone on, we’ve realized it was in the wrong direction. We’re going back with what we feel is a stronger car and we’ve learned a lot as the season has progressed.”

Watch Chase Elliott continue his championship challenge for this year's crown at Las Vegas Motor Speedway this Sunday at 2:30 pm ET.

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Edited by Anurag C
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