Sunday, Oct 01

Hendrick Motorsports Media Advance: Las Vegas




Age: 30 (July 31, 1992)


Hometown: Elk Grove, California


Resides: Mooresville, North Carolina


Crew Chief: Cliff Daniels


Standings: 9th

Twitter     Instagram     Facebook

No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1


NOT DONE YET: Sunday at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL, Kyle Larson finished sixth in stage one and third in stage two before contact with the turn seven wall resulted in a 35th-place finish for last year’s NASCAR Cup Series champion. Although Larson did not advance to the Cup playoffs Round of 8 in the driver standings, the No. 5 team advanced in the owner standings and is currently fourth – two above the cutoff line – entering the three-race round that determines the four teams that will compete for the owner’s title at Phoenix Raceway on Nov. 6.

WHAT HAPPENED IN VEGAS: In March 2021 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Larson led a race-high 103 laps to capture his first victory driving for Hendrick Motorsports and his first career Cup Series win on a 1.5-mile track. Prior to that performance, he had scored nine runner-up finishes – the most all-time without a Cup Series victory – in 71 career starts on 1.5-mile tracks.

LAS VEGAS EDGE: Larson’s average finish of 9.17 at Las Vegas trails only Joey Logano’s 8.89. Larson’s average finish at the desert track also ranks second among active venues where the 2014 rookie of the year has more than two starts. Larson has a 6.93 average finishing position in 14 starts at Dover Motor Speedway.

LEFT COAST LEADER: Four races have occurred on West Coast tracks in 2022 and Larson has accumulated the most points in those events. The Elk Grove, California, native won at Auto Club Speedway, finished second at Las Vegas, 34th at Phoenix Raceway after experiencing a mechanical issue and 15th with a stage victory at Sonoma Raceway.

DIRTY DOZEN: In 12 starts at LVMS, Larson has one win, five top-five finishes and nine top-10s with 251 laps led. He has completed all but six laps in those dozen starts while also finishing in the top-two in two of the last three races at the desert track.

MOVING ON UP: With wins at Auto Club Speedway and Watkins Glen International in 2022, Larson now has 18 career victories in NASCAR’s premier series. He is currently tied with Hendrick Motorsports teammate Chase Elliott and six others for 47th in all-time wins.  Larson's next trip to victory lane could move him into the top 45 at only 30 years old.

YOUR CAR NEEDS: This weekend, Larson will drive the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. From the convenience of home, customers can select the category, make, model and vehicle packages that are important to them from the nearly 30,000 new, high-quality pre-owned and certified cars, trucks and SUVs available at The website also makes it easy for customers to find one of Hendrick Automotive Group’s 94 dealership locations nationwide.




Age: 26 (Nov. 28, 1995)


Hometown: Dawsonville, Georgia


Resides: Dawsonville, Georgia


Crew Chief: Alan Gustafson


Standings: 1st

Twitter     Instagram     Facebook

No. 9 Hooters Chevrolet Camaro ZL1


ROUND OF 8 READY: Chase Elliott heads into the first race of the Round of 8 of the NASCAR Cup Series playoffs as the points leader by 20 markers over second-place Joey Logano. It is the sixth consecutive season the driver of the No. 9 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 has advanced to the Round of 8. The past two years he moved on to the Championship 4, earning his first career Cup Series title in 2020 after capturing the victory at Phoenix Raceway. The series has already raced on two of the three tracks in the Round of 8 this season. Elliott earned a ninth-place finish at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and finished 10th at Martinsville Speedway after leading 185 laps. The Dawsonville, Georgia, native earned 90 points across those two starts, trailing only Hendrick Motorsports teammate William Byron (106).

DUECES WILD: Elliott has 11 Cup Series starts at Las Vegas and nearly visited victory lane  there last fall, finishing in the runner-up position after a late-race charge for the win. Earlier this season, he finished ninth at the 1.5-mile track. In all, he has three top-five finishes and five top-10s at the Nevada venue. Elliott’s results do not reflect his success at the track. His 178 laps led there are his second-most (behind Bristol Motor Speedway) at facilities where he does not have a win. He also ranks second in stage points earned at Las Vegas with 109, and his three stage wins are tied for his second-most at a single track.

1.5-MILERS: This weekend at Las Vegas, Elliott will make his 73rd start on a 1.5-mile track in the Cup Series. In his previous 72 races, he has led 1,107 laps. Along with three victories (Atlanta Motor Speedway, Charlotte Motor Speedway and Kansas Speedway), Elliott has collected 23 top-five finishes – eight of which are runner-up results – and 38 top-10s on 1.5-milers. This season on 1.5-mile tracks, he’s fourth on the list of most points earned with 221, trailing only Ross Chastain and teammates Byron and Kyle Larson, and leads all drivers with three stage wins. Across seven starts at 1.5-mile facilities in 2022, Elliott has led 265 laps, second-most behind Chastain. In the series’ most recent race on a mile-and-a-half oval, Elliott was leading at Texas Motor Speedway on lap 184 when he had a tire go down and his Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 sustained too much damage to continue.

LAP LEADER: Last weekend at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL, Elliott extended his laps led total on the season to 803, which continues to top all drivers in 2022. The next-closest driver is Byron with 714. The 2022 regular-season champion’s 803 laps pacing the field so far this year are his third-most in a single season in his Cup Series career. He led 1,247 laps en route to his 2020 title and compiled 952 out front in 2021.

GUSTAFSON THE GREAT: No. 9 crew chief Alan Gustafson has 161 races under his belt on active 1.5-mile tracks in the Cup Series. In those starts, he has six wins, 41 top-five finishes and 76 top-10s with 2,118 laps led. Half of those victories have come with Elliott – most recently at Atlanta in July – and the other three were with NASCAR Hall of Famer Jeff Gordon. Gustafson’s first 1.5-mile win also came at Atlanta (2011) and marked Gordon's 85th career victory, moving the four-time Cup Series champion into third all-time in victories in NASCAR's top series.

GIVE A HOOT: Since 2002, Hooters has been an active participant in the fight against breast cancer, raising over $7.2 million to support the cause. This year, the company is once again combining forces with the V Foundation for Cancer Research during Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Customers can support by rounding up their checks, buying endowment cards and more. Find out additional ways to help by clicking here.

GET A HAT: In honor of Hooters’ “Give a Hoot” fundraising efforts, the Chase Elliott Foundation is making a donation to the V Foundation and Florida’s Moffitt Cancer Center to support the fight against breast cancer. Fans can support the cause by purchasing a special edition hat and other “Give a Hoot” gear at the Chase Elliott store.




Age: 24 (Nov. 29, 1997)


Hometown: Charlotte, North Carolina


Resides: Charlotte, North Carolina


Crew Chief: Rudy Fugle


Standings: 6th

Twitter     Instagram     Facebook

No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1


PUNCHED TICKET: Sunday at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL marked the final race in the NASCAR Cup Series playoff Round of 12. Following a 16th-place finish, William Byron clinched his spot in the Round of 8 for the first time in his Cup Series career. With points reset for the next round, he is now tied for fifth, three points below the cutline.

RAISING HIS GAME: So far across the six races of the 2022 playoffs, Byron has accumulated 222 points – the most of any driver in that same span. He has an average finish of 8.7 in the playoffs.

PIT ROAD PROWESS: In the 2022 playoffs, the No. 24 pit crew has an average four-tire pit stop time of 10.987 seconds, which is second-best in the field. The crew consists of Spencer Bishop (jackman), Jeff Cordero (front-tire changer), Orane Ossowski (rear-tire changer), Ryan Patton (tire carrier) and Landon Walker (fueler).

WEST COAST RUNS: In four races on the West Coast this season (Auto Club Speedway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, Phoenix Raceway and Sonoma Raceway), Byron has collected 125 points – the seventh-most by a driver in 2022. His best result in those four races came at Las Vegas, where he finished fifth in March.

1.5-MILE MOMENTUM: Byron is no stranger to success on mile-and-a-half tracks during his Cup Series career. Since the start of 2021 through the 2022 season so far, Byron has two wins, one runner-up finish, five top-fives, and 11 top-10s on 1.5-milers. In fact, four of those top-10 finishes on 1.5-mile venues came in 2022, which is tied for the fourth-most among drivers this season. Byron has collected 230 points on this style of track in 2022, tied for the second-most in the field. He has also led 237 laps led – third-most among drivers.

TURNING THE LUCK AROUND: When the No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 unloads for Sunday’s race at Las Vegas, it will mark Byron’s 10th Cup Series start at the 1.5-mile track. Out of those nine previous appearances, he has a best finish of fifth (March 2022). In fact, in the last three races at the Nevada-based venue, Byron has one top-five finish and two top-10s with 40 laps led and an average finish of 10.33.

VIVA LAS RUDY: Returning to Las Vegas for the fourth time with the Cup Series, crew chief Rudy Fugle is confident heading to a venue where he has previously had success. In his three Cup Series showings, Fugle has one top-five finish and two top-10s with his best finish with the No. 24 coming earlier this year (fifth). Aside from those three starts, the Livonia, New York, native has called the shots for 10 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series races and one NASCAR Xfinity Series event at Las Vegas. He has collected one win (March 2019 with Kyle Busch), four top-five finishes, six top-10s, three pole position and 238 laps led. With Byron in the Truck Series in 2016, the duo qualified 10th and raced to a fifth-place result at the 1.5-mile venue.

RAPTOR® TOUGH: Heading to Las Vegas this weekend, Byron will be back behind the wheel of the No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 for the final time in the 2022 season. RAPTOR® is a durable protective coating and bed liner that is designed to tolerate the toughest climatic conditions and can be applied to a wide range of substrates from steel, wood, concrete and plaster to plastics and composites. Resistant to common fuels, U.V., scratches and stains, RAPTOR® is available at local paint distributors, auto parts stores and can also be purchased from online retailers like Amazon.


48 Noah Gragson


Age: 24 (July 15, 1998)


Hometown: Las Vegas, Nevada


Resides: Charlotte, North Carolina


Crew Chief: Greg Ives


Standings: Alex Bowman - 15th

Twitter     Instagram     Facebook

No. 48 Ally/Koker's Garage Chevrolet Camaro ZL1


NO. 48: Las Vegas Motor Speedway will mark the third consecutive race Alex Bowman will miss due to a concussion suffered Sept. 25 at Texas Motor Speedway. As Bowman recovers, substitute driver Noah Gragson will fill in on Sunday at LVMS and in the upcoming events at Homestead-Miami Speedway and Martinsville Speedway. Gragson is the 48th driver to make a NASCAR Cup Series start for Hendrick Motorsports.

HOMETOWN KID: Gragson, who hails from Las Vegas, will return Sunday to race at his home track. Should the No. 48 driver find victory lane in the Cup Series, he will join Brendan Gaughan, Kurt Busch and Kyle Busch as drivers from the state of Nevada to win at the  venue.

FULL HOUSE: In his seven NASCAR Xfinity Series starts at Las Vegas, Gragson has placed no worse than sixth. In fact, the 24-year-old driver has finished in every position in the top-six except first. His most recent result at the 1.5-mile venue was second in March. Gragson started fourth in the third race of the season, won both stages and led 52 laps before crossing the finish line in the runner-up spot.

NEAR BEST IN SHOW: Gragson has an average finish of 3.57 in the Xfinity Series at Las Vegas. Among drivers with at least three starts there, he ranks second to only NASCAR Hall of Famer Mark Martin, who also has seven starts at LVMS.

GRAGSON ON 1.5-MILERS: This year in the Xfinity Series, Gragson has notched seven wins – most of all drivers – including four consecutive victories in September. He has taken home the hardware in the last two races on tracks of 1.5-miles in length: Kansas Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway.

ATOP THE BOX: Crew chief Greg Ives has a strong record at Las Vegas that includes a win in March with Bowman. In 12 starts, his drivers (Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Bowman) have posted three top-five finishes, five top-fives and an average finish of 12.3.

HOT ROD: This Sunday, the No. 48 Ally Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 will take on a dramatically new look – featuring a matte blackberry base and grapefruit bats across the hood. Primary partner Ally teamed up with Danny Koker and Koker’s Garage to create an interactive website to let fans create a paint scheme for a chance to be featured on the No. 48 Ally Chevy at Las Vegas. Of the over 2,500 schemes created, Bowman and Koker selected their favorites and then left it to the fans to vote via Twitter poll. Click here to see the 3D renderings of the winning scheme that will debut this weekend.




Hendrick Motorsports








Las Vegas
































Top 5










Top 10










Laps Led










Stage Wins











*Most **Most (tie)

LEADING THE WAY: With 10 wins through the 32 NASCAR Cup Series races in 2022, Hendrick Motorsports has earned the most victories so far this season. It is the organization’s 12th 10-win season – the most among all Cup Series teams. Hendrick Motorsports is the only team to see four drivers win a race this season. On top of that, Chase Elliott and William Byron rank first and second in laps led this year.

DOWN TO EIGHT: For the third straight season, Hendrick Motorsports has two drivers in the Round of 8 of the Cup playoffs with Elliott and Byron advancing. Elliott and teammate Alex Bowman reached the Round of 8 in 2020 while Elliott and Kyle Larson reached the round in 2021. Elliott and Larson won the championship in 2020 and 2021, respectively.

GREAT IN THE ROUND OF 8: Since the elimination-style playoff format debuted in 2014, Hendrick Motorsports has a series-best 10 wins in the Round of 8. The team has won the first race of the Round of 8 four times with three of those triumphs locking a driver into the Championship 4: Jeff Gordon at Martinsville Speedway in 2015, Jimmie Johnson at Martinsville in 2016 and Larson at Texas Motor Speedway in 2021.

VIVA LAS VEGAS: Hendrick Motorsports is tied for a series-best seven wins at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The victories have come among four drivers with Johnson’s four wins ranking as the most for the team. Gordon, Larson and Bowman each have one win at the Nevada facility.

STAGE SETTERS: Over the last five races at Las Vegas, Hendrick Motorsports has six stage wins. Elliott’s three are the most in that span, followed by Larson with two and Bowman’s one.

WESTERN STARS: The West Coast has been a strong spot of success for Hendrick Motorsports. Its 41 wins are the most by 18 victories over the next-closest Cup Series team. Johnson notched 15 wins out west followed by Gordon with 11. Larson’s four West Coast wins are the most among the current driver lineup. Johnson, Gordon and Larson all hail from California.

STUDYING THE TRENDS: Starting with Bowman’s 2020 win at Auto Club Speedway, Hendrick Motorsports has won seven of the last 13 races on the West Coast. Two of those wins came this year with Larson at ACS and Bowman at Las Vegas.

MILE-AND-A-HALF MUSCLE: In seven races on 1.5-mile tracks this season, Hendrick Motorsports has earned three wins. Bowman went to victory lane at Las Vegas in March, while Byron and Elliott each won at Atlanta Motor Speedway in March and July, respectively. The team tops the series in wins (three), top-10 finishes (17), laps led (752) and stage wins (seven) on that track type in 2022. In fact, the organization has three of the top four drivers in points on 1.5-mile venues – Byron and Larson are each tied for second with 230 points, while Elliott is fourth with 221 points.

PLAYOFF POWER: Hendrick Motorsports has posted a series-best 54 wins in the playoffs – 20 more than the next-closest team. Johnson has the most wins with 29. Among the current driver lineup, Elliott tops the board with seven wins, followed by Larson with five and Bowman with one. A Cup Series record nine different drivers have won a playoff race for the team. Hendrick Motorsports has won a postseason race in 18 seasons, which is the most among all Cup Series organizations.




Kyle Larson, driver of the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on the mission for the rest of the season: "I’m definitely bummed (to not be in Round of 8 for the driver championship), but we’re still in it for the owner's championship. I feel Las Vegas (Motor Speedway) and Homestead (Miami-Speedway) are really good tracks for me and this No. 5 team. We’re going to work hard these next three races to hopefully contend for the owner’s title in Phoenix."

Cliff Daniels, crew chief of the No. 5 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on the team's goals now: "Our focus right now is certainly to maximize every week. Disappointed to be out of the driver championship hunt but our objective is always to maximize points and go for race wins. Having the opportunity still to compete for the owner’s championship is a big deal for us. So there's a lot of motivation to go to try and get our car in the Championship 4 for the owner standings in Phoenix and still be able to compete for a championship. I think the team deserves it. Our company deserves it, and we would certainly love to give that to Mr. H. It would be really cool to have our car win the owner’s championship for him and one of our two cars still eligible for the driver's championship to go win that as well. That’s the goal and we’ll keep pushing."

Chase Elliott, driver of the No. 9 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on the team’s key ingredient for success in the playoffs: "Our key ingredient is just our team. I feel like I have a great team around me. I’ve always felt that way, and they make me look a lot better than I am very, very, very often. I’m super appreciative of them, the way that they go about their business, the way they let me go about my business and let me be me. We just focus on the things that we can excel at and the things that make us good. That’s the best way for us to be successful, to focus on ourselves and not get consumed by the rest of it."

Alan Gustafson, crew chief of the No. 9 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on heading back to Las Vegas Motor Speedway: "This week our goal is to just kick off this round with a strong finish. If we do that, it will be an improvement on the opening races of the first two rounds. That’s what’s plagued us so far in these playoffs. The first time we went to Vegas, we tried something that we felt was good but as the year has gone on, we’ve realized it was in the wrong direction. We’re going back with what we feel is a stronger car and we’ve learned a lot as the season has progressed. I’m confident that we can go there and achieve what we need to."

William Byron, driver of the No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on his journey to make the Round of 8: "Everyone has their own path. My path was really accelerated in each series. When I got to Cup, it was a tremendous learning curve. I think once you get to the Cup Series, it’s just a steep learning curve that nothing can prepare you for. Especially now, the car has made the series ultra-competitive. This level is the best of the best and it’s going to take everything you have to make it to the Championship 4. Making the Round of 8 was our goal at the start of the season, and anything short of that would have seemed like failure. We’re now focused on what we need to do to fight for a championship in Phoenix. It’s one race at a time."

Rudy Fugle, crew chief of the No. 24 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on his thoughts for this weekend at Las Vegas: "This is another track that we’ve already raced at this year with the Next Gen car but so much has changed that there’s not much we can use from that race to prepare for this weekend. It will not only be hotter this time, but we’re also running a different tire than we did in the spring. It’s the same tire we ran at Texas (Motor Speedway) and Kansas (Speedway). It’s a bit softer, which means it will wear out more than before especially on a slick track. We’ve learned a lot about the car since the spring, especially at the most recent mile-and-a-half mile tracks which gives us some confidence for this weekend."

Greg Ives, crew chief of the No. 48 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, on returning to Las Vegas: "It’s a weird feeling going to Las Vegas (Motor Speedway) this weekend given that we won with Alex (Bowman) in the spring. We can build off of the notes we have from the spring and successes at Kansas (Speedway). Noah (Gragson) has done a great job filling in for Alex and we will still have a shot on repeating our success this Sunday. Like we have done all year, we have to focus being clean on pit road, maximizing all of our opportunities and not taking ourselves out of the race. When we do that, I don’t think there is a team on pit road that can beat us."



No right click

Please link the article.