Chase Elliott called the last few laps at Talladega Superspeedway “really interesting” as he tried to make something happen.
But the Chevrolet driver felt the group of Ford drivers around him was playing nice.
“Those guys were being awfully patient with one another, I was very surprised,” Elliott said after finishing third. “It was more than obvious that they were not going to help me move forward. We had a solid car, I don’t think it was the best car today but we had a good car.
“Our team did a nice job overcoming the little bit of damage there the mid-portion of the race, and Alan [Gustafson, crew chief] made a good call there toward the end to ultimately get us the track position and have a shot.”
With how unstable the cars handled Sunday afternoon, Elliott felt many drivers were hesitant to battle three- and four-wide. Plus, missing the two big wrecks that occurred, Elliott admitted the day could have been worse.
Ahead of Elliott was Kurt Busch, who did try and make a move and went from third to second. It came at the expense of Kevin Harvick, who slid back to fourth. Joey Logano won the race after leading the final 42 laps.
“Like I said, I was really surprised with how patient they were being with one another,” said Elliott. “Really thought they would want to win a little more than what they did, or at least showed to me.
“I tried to kind of break out of line and do a couple of things there. It was very obvious that nobody was going to help me, around me. It’s hard to move forward. Even if I had just one other person to help, I felt like it would have made a big difference.”
Elliott did not lead a lap in the race Sunday afternoon nor did he score stage points.