Back to News

April 16, 2024

William Byron on Texas tangle with Chastain: ‘We’ll discuss it and go from there’

CONCORD, N.C. — William Byron said Tuesday he’s awaiting a discussion with Ross Chastain after their last-lap contact in Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race but that the benefit of hindsight hasn’t swayed his viewpoint on their overtime collision at Texas Motor Speedway.

Byron finished third behind a victorious Hendrick Motorsports teammate in Chase Elliott, but his charging No. 24 Chevrolet tangled with Chastain’s No. 1 Trackhouse Racing Chevy as the two drivers exited Turn 2. Chastain scraped the outside retaining wall and went from a likely top-five finish to a 32nd-place result in the Autotrader EchoPark Automotive 400.

Related Story
Race Rewind: It’s all about the chase at Texas as one driver breaks winless drought Race Rewind: It’s all about the chase at Texas as one driver breaks winless drought

RELATED: Byron takes third at Texas | Byron tops Power Rankings list

Byron said post-race Sunday that the contact was not intentional, adding, “I don’t want to do that to anyone.” In a Tuesday roundtable with reporters, the 26-year-old driver said he’d made the initial reach-out to Chastain to talk it through.

“We haven’t spoken yet. I reached out to him, but I’m sure we’ll get connected later this week,” Byron said. “But nothing really changes for me, my perspective. We just came together in a spot there. He was coming down the track to try to cover my run, and I was just making the corner exit like I anticipated him being where he would be on the exit. It’s unfortunate, but it’s racing on the last lap, and I’m just going to do that at times probably to save that spot.”

Byron said he would have expected turnabout if the roles were reversed, and Chastain — known as one of the series’ most aggressive drivers — was in his position under Sunday’s circumstances.

“I would. I think probably the timing and the momentum that I had was probably, maybe a little bit different than what he thought or something,” Byron said. “I haven’t talked to him, so once we talk, we’ll discuss it and go from there.”

Byron enters Sunday’s GEICO 500 (3 p.m. ET, FOX, MRN Radio, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) at Talladega Superspeedway as the circuit’s top winner this year with three Cup Series victories in the first nine races. He’s also rounded into a proven winner at superspeedway-style racing, with two wins each at Daytona International Speedway and Atlanta Motor Speedway.

MORE: Weekend schedule: Talladega

When pressed to measure his speedway credentials against the best of the field, Byron cites two drivers from rival manufacturers — Toyota’s Denny Hamlin and Ford’s Ryan Blaney, Talladega’s most recent winner last fall.

“Those two guys do a really good job of just kind of positioning themselves throughout the entire race,” said Byron, who was runner-up to Blaney at Talladega last October. “But yeah, it just seems like for us, we just have to go with a good mindset, and then it seems like the rest kind of takes care of itself. You can’t worry about the things you can’t control, so the times I go there stressed out or worried about crashing because of a point situation or whatever, it just doesn’t work. So just try to have the right mindset going there.”