I admit to a moment last Monday morning to nearly yelling, "Are you kidding me?!" We finally see one of our budding superstars on the Monster Energy Cup Series, Chase Elliott, get to victory lane, after coming tantalizingly close over the course of two and a half seasons, and then we are t-boned by word NASCAR boss Brian France had been arrested for aggravated DWI and criminal possession of oxycodone. Surely, I thought this was going to overshadow one of the most popular wins in a long time.

Thankfully, that hasn't happened.

What was interesting to me when I first heard about the charges was that France was in New York State over the weekend only instead of being at Watkins Glen, he was, apparently, vacationing in the Hamptons with the rich "swells" instead of hobnobbing with a swell bunch of race fans upstate. It's not surprising since France is rarely seen at the track.  Some have criticized him for this, claiming he's disinterested in the sport, while he says he trusts his top lieutenants to run the day-to-day operations as he stays back looking at the future and the big picture.

Whichever side you of that debate you come down on, the fact remains France has not been in the public eye like the other men who run major sports leagues in this country.  He was never really out front leading the charge, like say the NFL's Roger Goodell. Turns out in the end that was a good thing because his arraignment and subsequent indefinite leave of absence was hardly a blip on the radar screen with the national media.

So, instead of charges against what was considered one of the sporting world's influential people overwhelming Elliott's breakthrough win, France is already in many ways yesterday's news while journalists and people inside racing are excited to talk about how the 22-year-old driver's signature moment will help grow TV ratings and bring more fans back to the grandstands.  

Again, I say thank goodness.

I have no axe to grind with Martin Truex, Jr. and would not have thought less of him if he wound up winning the GoBowling at the Glen. Still, he's won plenty of checkered flags lately and I'll confess to cheering Elliott on in the final laps.  I wanted the win for him. I wanted the win for Rick Hendrick. I wanted the win for the sport. I also wanted the win for my 81-year-old mom, who's favorite driver finally got to the finish line first.

This was not one of those lucky gas mileage or Mother Nature raining on the parade wins, this was a nail biter. Elliott had to dig deep to hold off Truex, who turned up the heat to sauna-like conditions. Instead of wilting, though, Chase rose to the occasion, fighting off the reigning series champion, and proving to be a "chip off the old block". Like his dad, Hall of Famer Bill Elliott, his first Cup win would come on a road course and come after eight second place finishes. The fact his dad was also spotting for him last Sunday had to make it even sweeter for the both. Chase grabbing Rick Hendrick's 250th Cup checkered flag was a nice added bonus.

It was always a matter of when, not if for the Georgia native. Yet, I'll confess when he had the lead at Dover last year and refused to change his line or really do anything to hold off Kyle Busch it made me wonder. At Watkins Glen, however, there was a mental toughness I hadn't seen in Elliott. He was racing to win, refusing to lose.  He followed up with a solid top-10 run at Michigan, that did little to damper the extra confidence that comes with winning and we may see more triumphant moments coming in quick succession, as long as Hendrick Motorsports has worked out the bugs in the new Camaro that have proved irritating on the ovals.

It would certainly help bring the sport back into the spotlight and push Brian France's situation deeper into the shadows, where he can more easily work out his personal issues.  In that case, everybody wins.