Dover, DE – On Friday, it was looking like Sunday’s Apache Warrior 400 would be Toyota’s race to lose. Well, they didn’t lose as Kyle Busch took his No. 18 Toyota to victory lane at the Dover International Speedway. But, what Chevrolet did at the Monster Mile in the race showed us something.
Chevy drivers led 280 of the 400 laps on Sunday afternoon on the Delaware race track. They haven’t led that many laps since leading 282 at Dover back in June. They also led 283 at Bristol in April. Other than that, they struggled to lead a ton of laps.
But, they were strong in the race when it counted.
Chase Elliott led a race-high 138 laps. He’d finish second. Kyle Larson led 137 laps and finished fifth. Even Jimmie Johnson had a strong day leading five laps of his own and coming home third.
But, Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished seventh in his No. 88 Chevrolet to give Chevy four drivers in the first seven finishing positions.
That’s a strong day for them.
Elliott, has two runner-ups in the last three races. Larson, has four straight top five finishes and six top 10’s over the last seven races. Johnson gets his best finish since his Dover win in June. In fact, it was just his fourth top five all season. The previous three were all wins.
For Earnhardt, this was his best finish since a sixth place run at Sonoma in June. Other than a fifth place finish at Texas in April, this was his third best result all year.
Now, can Chevy take this strength to the rest of the season. They’ve led a ton of laps at Dover. Can they do that the rest of the way?