Bill Elliott One Proud Dad As Son Chase Takes To Bristol's High Banks
Being seen in the pit area at Bristol Motor Speedway is nothing unusual for Bill Elliott. The 1988 Sprint Cupchampion has logged quite a few miles at the World’s Fastest Half-Mile.
But seeing him with his head stuck under the hood of a car – one he isn’t racing – is a bit out of the ordinary. Until Chase Elliott pokes his head out of the driver’s side window.
The elder Elliott recently was at BMS, helping the 14-year-old out during a test session for Saturday‘s American Freedom Spectacular at BMS. Chase Elliott, who is off a Late Model race win last weekend at North Wilkesboro, will make his first Bristol start in the USARacing Pro Cup series event, a 200-lap event, preceded by a 150-lap Frank Kimmel Street Stock Spectacular.
What kind of advice did the 1988 winner of the spring race at BMS, give his son?
“The biggest thing he told me was to just get a handle on this place and understand what it takes to be quick,” said Chase Elliott, who started his racing career on dirt before moving on to go-karts, Bandoleros, Legends cars and then Late Model rides. “You have to get a feel for the track before you can go hammering off.”
For his part, Bill Elliott is perfectly happy to stand in the shadows while his son begins to step into the spotlight.
“We’re trying to help him work with his career goals and it’s a lot of fun in one respect, but also a lot of work in the other,” he said. “I can’t do it for him. He’s the one behind the wheel and he has to be smart on the track.”
As for making his Bristol debut, Bill Elliott feels his familiarity with the .533-mile oval should be helpful to his son, who drives a No. 9 Ford, just as his dad did during his heyday.
‘I’m just going to try and help him based on the experiences that I have had at Bristol,” he said. “There’s not just one thing. I’m just going to try and help him with what he is going to be going through there.”
And all the while, he will be cheering him on.
“I’m proud of him, just like I am proud of all my kids,” said the Georgia native. “Chase has done a really good job. But he has a long way to go.”
The Frank Kimmel Street Stock Spectacular takes the green flag at 3:15, followed by the USARacing Pro Cup race. The Charger race kicks off action at 3 p.m.
Tickets are just $15 for adults if purchased in advance, or $20 the day of the American Freedom Spectacular. Tickets for children 12 and under are $5. Visit the event page for more info.