But it was in the overlooked Republican race where Gillespie, the party's 2014 nominee for Senate, only narrowly beat far-right challenger Corey Stewart, a staunch ally of President Trump. Flame-throwing challenger Corey Stewart, the chair of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors, has touted his former role as the Trump campaign chairman and has challenged Gillespie to pledge his allegiance to Trump.
Winchester State Sen. Jill Vogel won a three-way race for the Republican lieutenant governor nomination, with 42.8 percent of the vote, to 40 percent for Bryce Reeves and 17.2 percent for Glenn Davis.
Virginia Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam defeated former U.S. Rep Tom Perriello in Tuesday's closely watched Democratic gubernatorial primary, with voters choosing a battle-tested party insider over a progressive insurgent.
The other statewide race happening is for lieutenant governor.
Northam begins the general election campaign as the slight favorite in the Old Dominion.
Most of the focus has been on the Democratic candidates seeking to succeed Democratic incumbent Terry McAuliffe, who can not run again because of term limits.
A low-key pediatric neurologist, Northam delivered a fiery victory speech Tuesday before winning the Democratic primary. He'll have his work cut for him; Democratic turnout exceeded Republican turnout in Tuesday's primary by roughly 150,000 votes.
But it may be more accurate to view the race through the lens of each man's endorsements - Northam racked up nods from Democratic Virginia legislators like current Gov. Terry McAuliffe, Sen.
The ad opens up with Former President Barack Obama, even though Obama himself has not actually endorsed Perriello's campaign - or any campaign in the Virginia Gubernatorial primaries.
"I am so thankful to the people of Virginia for this vote of confidence in our vision for the future of the Commonwealth".
Bashing Trump was important on the Democratic side, but it wasn't everything. She said she was leaning toward voting for Northam in the Democratic primary but liked what she heard from Perriello at his town hall last week in Leesburg.
Although he received a large amount of attention and praise from prominent national Democrats, Perriello was ultimately unable to expand the universe of Democratic primary voters enough to counter Northam's advantages. Virginia has no automatic recount rule, and requires that the candidate filing for a recount follow the leader with fewer than 1 percent.
Gillespie, 55, of Fairfax County, has tried to avoid appearing either too critical or too supportive of Trump, a task that could become more hard in a general-election campaign targeting a broader audience of potential voters.
The AP has called the Democratic race for the governor nomination for Ralph Northam. If Democrats can net just one district that year (or somehow take a seat before then in a special election or through a party switch), it will be up to the new lieutenant governor to break the ensuing deadlock and decide which party controls the chamber.
A 1979 graduate of Pemberton Township High School, Gillespie has spent most of his long career in politics working behind the scenes to help Republicans win elections and govern. Challenging him is Gene Rossi, a retired federal prosecutor who's vowed to work on criminal justice reform, as well as Susan Platt, a longtime political operative and former lobbyist who's made a point of attacking Trump's policies.