Elliott Sadler and the OneMain Financial team brought home a sixth-place finish in Friday night’s GoBowling 250 at Sadler’s hometown track of Richmond Raceway. With the finish, Sadler sits fifth in the NASCAR Xfinity Series Playoff standings with two races remaining before the Round of 8.
After logging a speed of 22.964 seconds in qualifying, Sadler earned a 13th-place starting position for the evening’s 187.5-mile event. Once underway, the OneMain Financial driver was able to quickly gain track position, even after reporting the handling of his Camaro was tight in the center and loose off on lap 25. Driving through the tough-handling condition, the Emporia, Va., native was able to complete three additional passes to be running in sixth place at the conclusion of Stage One.
Before Stage Two began, the OneMain Financial team made a pit stop for an adjustment, fresh tires and fuel. The quick stop put the No. 1 team in the fifth position for the start of the second stage. It wasn’t long thereafter that Sadler relayed to his team that his OneMain Financial Chevrolet had lost its forward bite. Using his veteran experience, Sadler drove through the almost caution-free stage, maintaining his track position. When the yellow flag was displayed for an incident on the backstretch, the OneMain Financial team was in the seventh-place running position. The stage then ended following the lap-148 caution.
Once again following the stage end, the OneMain Financial team came to pit road for four tires, fuel and further adjustments. Within laps after the restart, Sadler relayed his Chevrolet’s balance had significantly improved. With the round of adjustments made in the right direction, Sadler was able to continue his run within the top five. It wasn’t until his tires began to wear that the OneMain Financial driver began to slip back. On lap 220, the caution flag returned giving the OneMain Financial team the opportunity for fresh tires and fuel. Sadler worked to hold his track position on the restart, finding himself in the sixth position as the laps began to wind down. When the race concluded, the OneMain Financial Chevrolet was in sixth place. The finish was Sadler’s 22nd top 10 of the season.
Christopher Bell won the kickoff NXS Playoff event and was followed by Ross Chastain, Daniel Hemric, JR Motorsports team owner Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Matt Tifft to round out the top five.
Elliott Sadler, driver OneMain Financial team:
“It’s not a win, but it’s a step in the right direction. We had a solid day today and we’ll take this momentum into next weekend. I would have loved to get the win tonight, racing at my hometrack for the last time, but I’ve got some great memories and have done some good racing here. Thank you to all my partners and the fans for all of their support over the years.”
Laps Completed (Led): 250 of 250 (0)
Points (Bonus): 40 (0)
Points Standings (from leader): 5th (-39)