The start to the 2018 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season hasn’t gone the way that Hendrick Motorsports would have liked. Currently, none of their four drivers have won a race yet. Neither are in the top 10 in the season points standings either. They really haven’t been strong contenders to win on a weekly basis yet.
But, that could change on Sunday at the Dover International Speedway. Dover is a place where Jimmie Johnson and Chase Elliott have thrived. While they haven’t had the overall speed to win on the season yet, Dover could be a spot where if they don’t win, they can get solid top five finishes instead.
Johnson, has scored seven top 10 finishes in his last nine Dover starts. Four of those seven are wins, two more are third place efforts. Since 2008, Johnson has 16 top 10 finishes in 20 tries at the Monster Mile. This is his playground. He’s the defending race winner and would love nothing more than to silence his doubters and take his No. 48 Chevrolet to victory lane in Sunday’s AAA 400 Drive for Autism (2 p.m. ET/FS1/MRN/SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).
But, he will have his hands full with his teammate Elliott too. Out of four career Dover starts at the Cup level, Elliott has yet to finish outside the top five. He led 138 laps and well on his way to a win last fall, but Kyle Busch caught him and passed Elliott for the win instead. He finished fifth in this race last year and third in each of the two races in 2016.
Can they continue that Dover success this weekend, or will they revert to their 2018 struggles instead?