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HomeNASCAR NewsBlaney vs. Elliott: The Battle for NASCAR's Most Popular Driver

Blaney vs. Elliott: The Battle for NASCAR’s Most Popular Driver

Blaney vs. Elliott: Chase Elliott’s 2023 NASCAR Cup Series season faced a challenging start due to a tibia injury that sidelined him for six races. Despite being a five-time ‘Most Popular Driver award winner, this year might see a shift in fortunes for Elliott, according to NBC Sports analyst Rick Allen.

In a detailed analysis, Allen highlighted the struggles Elliott faced during the season and suggested that Ryan Blaney, the #12 Team Penske driver, could potentially dethrone Elliott as the ‘Most Popular Driver.’ Blaney’s strong case and effective marketing from Team Penske have made him a contender for the award.

The ‘Most Popular Driver’ award has been a prestigious title in NASCAR, with voting lines open for fans to choose their favorite driver until November 29. Chase Elliott’s dominance in the category for the past five years is under threat, with Ryan Blaney emerging as a potential successor.

While this news may surprise Elliott’s fans, Allen expressed confidence that Elliott would bounce back strongly in the next season. Despite missing seven races, Elliott’s determination and potential for a comeback were acknowledged.

Elliott’s 2023 season was not the only disappointment for Hendrick Motorsports, as teammate Alex Bowman also faced setbacks. Both drivers missed the playoffs for the first time since joining the team. Elliott’s absence was filled by Corey LaJoie and Josh Berry, and despite a playoff waiver, the challenges persisted.

Blaney vs. Elliott (1)

Chase Elliott reflected on the team’s struggles, noting that unresolved issues from the previous season persisted. While 2022 had its challenges, including finishing outside the top 10 multiple times, reaching the Championship 4 race was considered a success. However, Elliott felt that the team couldn’t address certain issues, leading to continued struggles in 2023.

As the announcement for the 2023 NMPA Most Popular Driver approaches on November 30, the competition between Chevy and Ford drivers adds anticipation to the Champion’s Week festivities. Whether Chevy fans will once again celebrate their driver or if a Ford contender will claim the title remains to be seen.

ALSO READ: Chase Elliott 2023 NASCAR Odyssey: A Season of Challenges and Resilience

 

Our Reader’s Queries

What happened to Blaney in the race?

NASCAR initially reported that Blaney’s left front shock was below the required length, resulting in a 36th-place finish. However, NASCAR later retracted the penalty.

How good is Ryan Blaney?

Did you know that Blaney clinched the 2023 Cup championship with just 8 top-five finishes, the same number he had in 2018? Despite this, he managed to match his personal record for wins in a single season, with 2021 being his best year yet. However, his 562 laps led were only the fourth-highest in his Cup career.

Did Bill Elliott ever drive a Dodge?

Elliott made a daring career decision when he joined Ray Evernham’s Dodge team, which marked the automaker’s first factory effort in decades. In the 2001 Daytona 500, Elliott secured the pole position and finished fifth in the race.

How many brothers does Bill Elliott have?

Elliott’s triumphs were most prominent during the 10-year span from 1982 to 1991, when he teamed up with Melling Racing and owner Harry Melling. The crew was comprised of Bill’s two elder siblings, Ernie Elliott, who served as the chief mechanic and engine builder, and Dan Elliott, who specialized in transmissions. This partnership proved to be a winning combination for Elliott.

Khushal Bhatia
Khushal Bhatiahttps://slicksandsticks.com/
Khushal Bhatia, a distinguished BA (Hons) English graduate from St. Stephen College (University of Delhi) and a holder of a Post Graduate Diploma in Journalism (English) from IIMC Delhi, is an accomplished journalist. Currently affiliated with Slicksandsticks.com, Khushal is an expert in covering a range of sports topics with a specialization in motorsports, particularly NASCAR. His insightful articles explore the nuances of the sporting world, providing readers with comprehensive analysis and the latest updates. With a commitment to unbiased reporting, Khushal's expertise and authoritative voice make him a reliable source for sports enthusiasts.
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