While many other 13-year-old boys are having a lazy summer, "Awesome Bill" Elliott's son Chase is not only following in his famous father's racing footsteps. Young Chase is living his own dream.
Elliott's dreams includes visiting Victory Lane, which the young man just did, winning his second late model race in the GAS (Georgia Asphalt Series) at Georgia's Watermelon Capital Speedway.
In that race, young Elliott secured the pole position. "We had an awesome car and the team was pumped up," said Elliott. "We swapped the lead several times before the end of the night and we were lucky enough to lead the last lap for the win."
Elliott beat NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver David Ragan, as well as GAS series rivals, T.J. Reaid and Casey Roderick, to claim his second win. Elliott now leads the GAS Series points standings by a mere five points over his teammate Casey Roderick, and 28 points ahead of T.J. Reaid.
As expected with a father as famous as Bill Elliott, son Chase began his career at a young age. "I started out racing dirt go karts when I was about 8," Chase explains. "We moved up to shifter karts, bandoleros, legends and then on to what we are running now, the late models."
Elliott is being overly modest in his recitation of his racing resume. Let's fill in some blanks for him:
In 2006, the young man raced in the Colorado Sprint Championships Series for his first full season of racing and won back-to-back championships.
In 2007, Elliott was named Rookie of the Year in the Atlanta Motor Speedway's Thursday Thunder series. He won back-to-back championships, first in 2007 in the Thursday Thunder series and then in 2008 in the AMS Winter Flurry Series/Georgia Winter Series.
In 2009, Elliott, his mom Cindy and his dad Bill went late model racing, the next rung up his racing career ladder. In only his seventh start, young Chase won his first race at his home track, Lanier National Speedway in Georgia.
With his second late model win in his back pocket, and the points lead in hand at present, Elliott is continuing his march forward. Although he says that his goal for this race season is "just doing the best I can," there is no doubt that this driver is also focused on contending for the ultimate trophy in the GAS Series, the championship.
Elliott credits much of his success to his family and his team. He has a great group, including former late model star Ricky Turner, who is serving as his crew chief.
Under his father's tutelage, young Chase also knows how to work his sponsors into the conversation. "Our sponsor is Aaron's Sales and Rents," says Elliott. "I just like getting their name out to the consumers."
Elliott is indeed poised for being just barely a teenager. But he seems to enjoy his learning out on the track much more than being in the eighth grade, saying "I'm not really a big fan of school."
Elliott is a fan of other things in his life, in addition to his racing. He likes "corn bread, comedies, and riding dirt bikes."
And although Chase readily admits that his dad is his mentor in his racing career, he also shares that he is a huge fan of his other favorite race car driver, NASCAR Sprint Cup points leader Tony Stewart.
Young Chase's ultimate goal is, of course, to continue in his father's footsteps. When asked where he sees himself in five years, Elliott says confidently, "I hope to be driving in one of NASCAR's top series."
Sports Illustrated agrees with Chase's hope. In 2009, the writers of Sports Illustrated chose Chase Elliott to represent auto racing in their "Where Will They Be?" special issue, featuring the predicted future stars of the sport.
Chase's reaction to the honor was one of being a bit in awe. "I thought it was very neat and a great chance to get your name out there," says the young driver.
With wisdom beyond his years, Elliott summarizes his feelings about his career to date. "I am really just out there doing what I love more than anything else," says Bill Elliott's son. "It's awesome."