Elliott Sadler Holds Off Denny Hamlin For His First Win At The Lady In Black

by September 3, 2016

DARLINGTON, S.C. – Elliott Sadler overcame contact with the wall in the final two laps to hold off a hard-charging Denny Hamlin for the win in Saturday’s NASCAR XFINITY Series VFW Sport Clips Help a Hero 200 at Darlington Raceway.

Sadler, driver of the No. 1 OneMain Chevrolet, led 75 laps en route to his first NASCAR national series win at the track, Too Tough To Tame. With two laps remaining, Sadler made contact with the wall. Hamlin was able to dive around the damaged car to clear him for the lead, but Sadler wasn’t done fighting for his second victory of the season. Sadler was able retake the lead immediately and drive away from the No. 18 Sport Clips Toyota of Hamlin.

This was Sadler’s first victory in 13 races at the 1.366-mile track in Darlington, S.C. Sadler dedicate the win to his JR Motorsports team owner, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., who announced on Friday that he would be out of his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series ride for the rest of the 2016 season due to health issues following concussion-like symptoms.

Starting and finishing in the race in the second position, Denny Hamlin, driver of the No. 18 Sport Clips Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing, led 47 laps over the course of the 200-mile event. Hamlin has finished in the top-10 nine times in nine starts at Darlington Raceway.

Daniel Suarez, driver of the No. 19 ARRIS Toyota, finished in the third position. This was Suarez’s second top-10 finish in two starts at Darlington Raceway.

Ending the race in a disappointing fourth position after having a dominant car and making his way to the lead, Kyle Larson, driver of the No. 42 ENEOS Chevrolet, spun from the lead position as he made his way onto pit road. The spin caused a chain reaction, involving three other cars colliding with one another behind him. While Larson was able to continue the race, his dominant car never made it back to the lead.

Rounding out the top-five was Brennan Poole. Erik Jones, Ryan Blaney, Jeremy Clements, Brandon Jones and Ryan Preece completed the top-10.

Throughout the afternoon, there were only three cautions. There were also eight lead changes among six leaders.

After 24 races this season, Elliott Sadler leads the NASCAR XFINITY Series championship standings by 54 points over Daniel Suarez. Justin Allgaier sits third, 65 points back.

Up next on the schedule for the series is the Virginia529 College Savings 250 at Richmond International Raceway on Friday, September 9 at 7:30 p.m. ET.