One of the talking points of Kyle Larson’s deal with Hendrick Motorsports is his shuffling between NASCAR and sprint car racing next year. The Hendrick management, led by owner Rick Hendrick, is happy to let him race there, as long as NASCAR remains the priority. Hendrick, while talking about the same, also mentioned that Chase Elliott would like to do something similar.
Elliott raced on short tracks at a very young age in the early parts of his career and Hendrick said he knows Elliott wants to mix things up with some short-track racing along with NASCAR. Elliott said that current events have nothing to do with his interest in doing so. It has been on his mind for a while now.
“I’ve had a lot of interest to go and go back and run short track stuff. Over the past number of years, I’ve said that,” Elliott said during a media interaction. “I’ve said that a lot. I just haven’t had the right opportunities and haven’t been able to do the things the way I wanna do them,” he expressed.
The 2021 NASCAR Cup Series schedule is again heavy on one-day shows. No practice and qualifying days mean drivers can try their hand elsewhere if they want to. That’s also what allows Larson to go for dirt racing.
Elliott, though, said his thought process went in that direction long before this situation occurred. He just has not been able to figure out a way to manage his schedule.
“It’s not necessarily the racing one day a week thing. I’ve had the interest when we were at the track more aside from this year. I think now I’ve been able to at least get some ideas of things that I wanna do,” Elliott said further.
While he is itching for some more racing experience that will boost his NASCAR skills as well, he will not rush things.
“Not sure exactly how timely some of it will be. But I wanna do it my way and I wanna do it the way I think is right. Until I can do it that way, I won’t. That’s just, kind of, the way I am,” Elliott continued.
“I’m looking forward to doing some more racing. I really really want to and I’m excited about it,” he added.
It will be very interesting to see what Elliott brings to the table for the No. 9 team in NASCAR along with some parallel driving experience elsewhere. While that is something he will figure out next year, he is currently in the heat of the playoff battle.