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Alejandro Alvarez | NASCAR Digital Media

Chase Elliott’s playoff hopes end in mid-race crash at Phoenix

Chase Elliott’s last-ditch hopes for keeping his playoffs alive ended in a Lap 166 crash that left his Hendrick Motorsports No. 9 Chevrolet with severe damage.

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Elliott’s car spun sharply at the entrance to Turn 1 and backed into the outside retaining wall. After attempting to drive away, Elliott stopped and exited the No. 9 Chevy unhurt. After being cleared at the infield care center, Elliott said he thought a tire went down to cause the crash.

“Yeah, it’s just a continuation of our first two weeks, unfortunately, ” Elliott said. “I feel like we were in a good position to run solid. I’m not sure why we had a tire go down. I think that’s what happened, at least; it seemed like it. It’s unfortunate. Like I said, these last three weeks have been pretty rough. So, hopefully Homestead goes better and we can get prepared good for next season and get a good notebook for next year.”

Elliott was shown with 165 laps complete of a scheduled 312 in Sunday’s Bluegreen Vacations 500, the last race in the Monster Energy Series playoffs’ Round of 8. He entered the next-to-last race of the season ranked eighth. He ends the Round of 8 with finishes of 36th, 32nd and 39th.