Father and son dusted off their hotrods for a Saturday night cruise in Nashville.
Seemed like a fitting way for Bill and Chase Elliott to spend an evening - some quality bonding time after bandying about the idea of racing against each other.
And son won.
Nashville Fairgrounds Speedway seemed like a fitting place for the Elliott's to start their engines in the last race of the first season of the Camping World Superstar Racing Experience Series, which also featured Tony Stewart, Bobby Labonte, Michael Waltrip, Helio Castroneves, Tony Kanaan and Marco Andretti, among others.
Chase, the defending NASCAR Cup Series champion, is no stranger to the track, which he raced on with some success as a teenager and has championed for inclusion in the Cup Series schedule.
Bill, a 65-year-old with 44 Cup wins to his name, along with the 1998 Cup Series title, said he had fond memories of the races he ran before the circuit's top series stopped going there after 1984.
"No. 1 was having a chance to race with dad," Chase said of his decision to participate Saturday, a day before he traveled to New Hampshire for his regular Cup job. "And Tony, two guys I've looked up to."
The two traded some barbs leading up to the race, after Bill talked of injuring his hand earlier this season after hitting Labonte. They traded the lead early in the race, which Bill led most of the evening after winning the first heat, with Chase a close second.
"Don't let him lie to you, it was actually a bar fight last week," Chase said with a laugh of his dad's injury.
"Yeah, sure," Bill responded wryly. "I forgot what bar."
Chase's boss Rick Hendrick gave dad the nod before the race. Chase proved him wrong by beating Stewart to the finish line, with dad finishing third, meaning father and son shared the podium afterward.
"I'd like to prove differently, but we'll see," Bill said of Hendrick's prediction that son would beat father. "I would say the odds are in (Chase's) favor."
Chase raised the checkered flag as he emerged from his car and immediately addressed the crowd - and his father.
"Did ya'll have fun tonight?" he asked during his postrace interview. "I got to race against two of my heroes. Those are moments I'll cherish forever.
"I don't know what lit a fire under (Bill) tonight. I haven't seen him that aggressive in years."
Father and son spent a lot of time near each other no sooner than Nashville Mayor r John Cooper instructed drivers to start their engines. Bill, in his purple No. 9, left most of the field behind, with Chase in his gray No. 94 car, a nod to his cousin Casey Elliott, who died of cancer at 21 in 1996, chasing from behind.
By the third heat, as the race was winding down, Chase led all hotrods, just ahead of series champion Stewart, with Bill following in third.
"It was a lot of fun," Bill said. "I knew Chase was going to be hard to beat. ... He knows how to get it to the end."
For Chase, the opportunity to continue his push for a Cup return to the track also was a motivating factor.
"Go show support in person, go be there, go race," he said. "I hope this weekend continues to add to the conversation and the positivity of what a Cup race would do for that city and how much fun it would be."
Still, son trying to beat dad, and dad trying to beat son, was the main objective, though Chase stressed trash talk leading up to Saturday was minimal, if at all.
"We haven't had a chance to race against each other much over the years," Chase said. "I have no question that we both want to beat each other. Just to be able to share the same (type) of car. I'm curious to see what my comments are versus his."
Tony Stewart wrapped up the final race in the 6 race series by winning the overall championship.
SUPERSTAR RACING EXPERIENCE
Ernie Francis Jr.
Willy T. Ribbs (DNF)