Motorsports is a humbling sport. One day you’re the new NASCAR Cup Series champion. A month later, you’re scratching and clawing your way in an effort to make it into one of the most prestigious super late model events in the country — the Snowball Derby at Five Flags Speedway.
After qualifying outside the top 30 in 42nd in Friday’s qualifying session, Chase Elliott will be relegated to attempting to gouge his way into the field from the last chance qualifying race.
However, he isn’t the only NASCAR name facing potential elimination on Saturday. Noah Gragson (35th) and Carson Hocevar (36th) each were outside the top-30 in qualifying as well and will roll to the LCQ. Chandler Smith will also be in the LCQ after he was DQed in qualifying due to a team member passing him a mobile phone to show him his lap time, which is a rule violation at the Snowball Derby (Matt Weaver of Short Track Scene has much more on Smith’s DQ, here).
Saturday’s last chance qualifier is a 50-lap contest, which will move the top-four finishers into the big show on Sunday. If you finish outside the top-four, you head back home.
While it will be a nerve-racking Saturday for Elliott, Gragson, Hocevar and Smith, many other NASCAR names secured their place in the field for Sunday’s race on Friday.
Ty Majeski turned the third-fastest lap of qualifying to secure his place in the field. Kyle Busch (ninth), Derek Kraus (14th), Grant Enfinger (17th), Ross Kenseth (22nd) and Mason Diaz (27th) also locked their spot into the field as well.
The 53rd-annual Snowball Derby will take place on Sunday, December 6th at 2PM ET. Live PPV coverage of the race will start with the pre-race show on Speed51.com at 1PM ET. PPV viewing tickets can be purchased for the events on Saturday and Sunday, here.
Toby is the Founder, Editor and go-to man for TobyChristie.com. He is also the co-host of The Final Lap Weekly Podcast. Additionally, Toby is a NMPA (National Motorsports Press Association) award winning writer, and has followed NASCAR as a fan since 1993.