NEWTON, Iowa (AP) — Some fatherly advice helped Elliott Sadler adjust his attitude after a controversial penalty cost him a race in Indianapolis last week.
Sadler rebounded from that much-talked-about restart penalty to win the NASCAR Nationwide race at Iowa Speedway on Saturday night.
Before Sadler left North Carolina on Thursday, his dad told him he could either wallow in self-pity or come out with greater determination to keep and build on his series points lead.
"He said, 'You've got to fight for your right to be in the position you're in, and don't let these guys take this championship from you. You can either lay over and die or you can stand up and fight,'" Sadler said. "He wanted me to come and fight this weekend."
Sadler's No. 2 Chevrolet was on the pole with a track-record qualifying speed of 135.141 mph and was near or at the front of the pack the entire race. He overtook Justin Allgaier on the 192nd of 250 laps and went on to his fourth victory of the season.
Sadler denied Ricky Stenhouse Jr. a fourth straight victory on the 0.875-mile track, and increased his lead in the series standings to 18 points over Richard Childress Racing teammate Austin Dillon.
"We all had one thing in mind: Let's go to Iowa and kick some butt and show everybody what we're all about and what kind of men we are," Sadler said. "I think this is a great statement race for our race team."
Allgaier was second, followed by Sam Hornish Jr., Michael Annett and Stenhouse.
"Man, it's so frustrating to run second when you can see him and are catching him at the end," Allgaier said.
Danica Patrick, who crashed early in Indianapolis last week, finished 11th.
Hornish won the final "Dash4Cash" bonus of $100,000. His fan partner, Tammy Altieri of Spokane, Wash., also won $100,000.
Stenhouse, who led 209 of 250 laps at Iowa in May, was no threat this time. Drivers were using new right-side tires for this race, and Stenhouse said he never got a good feel on the track.
"We lacked right-side grip," he said. "But it's the same tire for everybody, and we didn't quite figure it out. It's just part of the game."