Elliott Sadler makes his return to the Xfinity Series this weekend in the first of two races he’s scheduled to run with Kaulig Racing in the No. 10 Chevrolet.
Sadler has been adamant that the ToyotaCare 250 at Richmond Raceway (7 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1) as well as Las Vegas later this year will be it for him. In an interview with FOX Sports that aired this week, Sadler said he was “100 percent” done after these two races, which he reiterated when asked Friday afternoon if he was sticking to that.
“I definitely want these two races to be my last,” Sadler said. “I’m doing this a lot for the sponsor (Nutrien Ag Solutions) that’s helping us this weekend and help to Ross [Chastain].”
Sadler retired from full-time NASCAR competition at the end of 2018, and said he “definitely made the right decision.” Being away from racing provides Sadler the time to do what he wanted in spending time with family. He coaches his children’s baseball games and instead of traveling for race weekends also gets to go watch the activities of his nieces.
But Sadler did use the word jealous when thinking of what is coming next year. Richmond — Sadler’s home track — will see the return of the Gander Outdoors Truck Series.
“What the crap? Why do y’all wait until I retire and bring the Xfinity cars back to Martinsville and the Trucks back to Richmond?” he joked. “They did that on purpose!
“I really want these two (races) to be my final two, but man, the trucks here are going to be fun. If I’m not in a truck, I’m going to come watch. Putting a sponsorship together to be in a competitive truck is very expensive, and I don’t want to come up here and ride around just to say I did it.”
The 43-year-old wants to be included in the headlines Friday night as well. Entering the night with six consecutive finishes of seventh or better, Sadler said he can’t return to the series and not match that performance.
“Hopefully we can run in the top five, top six tonight,” he said. “It’s all about long-run speed here, and hopefully we’ve made enough adjustments to be good for that. But we want to be close enough to take a chance sometime during the race to try to lead laps and run up front.”