Tyler Reddick Rolls at Road America for First Career Win

Reddick becomes the third driver this season to win his first career Cup race on a road course.

The theme of first-time winners in the Cup Series this season continued today at Road America. Tyler Reddick outdueled Chase Elliott for his first career victory around the scenic four-mile road course in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. Reddick is the fifth driver to earn his first win this season, and the 13th different winner this year.

Elliott dominated the first two stages of the race and led a race-high 36 laps, but Reddick chased him down on Lap 46 and was able to take the lead away from the defending race winner. It was a brilliant move by the Richard Childress Racing driver, who went on to win by 3.304 seconds. He finished a full 21.138 seconds ahead of Elliott's teammate Kyle Larson.

“What better place than Road America?” Reddick said. “I love the fans. I love this race track. Being here on Fourth of July weekend is just so special, and just a huge shoutout to 3Chi and the special paint scheme we have this weekend. Love that they’re coming on board this year and taking a chance on a young guy like me, and we got it done. We won a race!”

Tyler Reddick Rolls at Road America for First Career Win

The 26-year old had to work hard to get around the driver of the No. 9 car. “I definitely knew he was fast, but we could stay with him on the long run. That pit sequence, we’d be close or get around him on pit road, and we’d have a great shot. Didn’t quite get around him but we were within reach. Thankfully, just waited for the right opportunity and was able to take advantage of it in Turn 6.”

“Everyone on this team at RCR has believed in me,” said Reddick, who led the final 16 laps. “I’ve made a lot of mistakes along the way, but, man, this year has been one step, one mistake away from greatness all year long, and we finally did it today. It feels good.”

Although he came out on the wrong side of things, it was still a positive day for Elliott and the Hendrick team. “First off, congrats to Tyler,” Elliott said. “I know he’s been super close to that first win, and I’ve been down that road, and it can be a rocky one. I’m happy for those guys, they deserve it."

"Proud of our NAPA team though. I didn’t do a very good job there. I just let him stay close enough to pressure me there while we had decent tires and never could get enough of a gap. Made a couple mistakes. I was gaining a gap there a couple times and made a couple mistakes and let him get back close enough. I felt like we probably needed a little bit, but I think we were good enough to win, so those always hurt."

Finishing behind Reddick and the Hendrick duo were Trackhouse Racing teammates Ross Chastain and Daniel Suarez. "Daniel and I were just talking, and there were little bits and pieces we were off today and we still had top-five speed," Chastain said. "Absolutely nothing to be ashamed about. We were just lacking mainly rear grip on throttle and in the right turns especially. Got really slick there at the end, and those guys didn’t slow down in the end as much as we did."

Tyler Reddick Rolls at Road America for First Career Win

Chevrolet had a clean sweep of the top five on Sunday as Ford drivers took five of the next six positions. Chris Buescher led the way for the Mustangs with Austin Cindric, Michael McDowell, AJ Allmendinger, and Kevin Harvick completed the top ten.

This was the seventh top-ten finish of the season for McDowell, which is the most of his 15-year career. “It was a solid effort but not what we hoped for. We didn’t quite have the speed we needed to run up in the top five and challenge and kind of slid back a little bit. All in all, it was a solid day and we executed well. It is nice to be disappointed with an eighth-place finish, but our expectations have gone up and we want to challenge for wins.”

Chase Briscoe won Stage 1 and finished 14th while Ryan Blaney won Stage 2 and finished 11th. Martin Truex Jr was the highest-finishing Camry, coming home in 13th after running out of fuel on the final lap of the race. The other Toyota drivers finished 17th (Hamlin), 18th (Bell), 23rd (Kurt Busch), 29th (Kyle Busch), and 35th (Wallace) respectively.

While there weren't any cautions for accidents in the race, there were plenty of drivers that had off-course excursions. Kyle Busch and Aric Almirola both spun in Turn 5 on Lap 5 of the race but the two were not related. “No grip. No turn. No drive. No stop. No nothing,” Busch said over his team radio. It was another miserable afternoon after having to start the race in the back after the team made an engine change yesterday after qualifying.

Chastain had a few moments where he went into the grass and gravel, as did Bubba Wallace and Penske driver Joey Logano. Other drivers had issues on pit road. Denny Hamlin drove through too many pit boxes during his first stop and was forced to restart at the rear of the field. Allmendinger had to make a second trip to pit lane because of a loose wheel.

It has been a frustrating season for Bubba, but he is learning to cope with his emotions behind the wheel. “I want to win, need to win, gotta win. I have a team capable of winning. The car is capable of winning. So, that just creates passion. With passion comes frustration. Just gotta manage it. No matter how frustrated we get or how good the times get, we’re still in this together. It’s a team effort.”

Tyler Reddick Rolls at Road America for First Career Win

Today's win also secures a playoff position for Reddick, with seven races remaining before the cutoff race at Daytona. Harvick trails Christopher Bell by 20 points for the final playoff spot as Elliott maintains his lead in the overall standings by 33 points over Blaney.

In the elimination era (eight years) Harvick has made the playoffs every single time, winning the championship in the inaugural season. He made it to the Championship Four in five of those eight years, and still made it to the playoffs last season despite not winning a race. That is something he may have to do again if he can't find victory lane in the next seven races.

With another road course race in the history books, it is time to head back to a high-speed oval. Coverage for Sunday's Quaker State 400 at Atlanta begins at 3 PM ET on USA Network.

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