CLERMONT, IND. – Entering the Reese’s 200, Sammy Smith finished a season-worst 12th in the ARCA Menards Series most recent race at Pocono Raceway. At Lucas Oil Indianapolis Raceway Park on Friday (July 29), Smith redeemed himself, winning his fourth career pole, leading 89 laps and finishing runner-up.
Smith was one of two leaders in the ARCA race at the 0.686-mile short track, the 11th race of this ARCA season. He led the second-most laps and was the highest-finishing ARCA series regular. The winning driver? Chandler Smith, who now has won three straight ARCA races at IRP. Chandler Smith also is a NASCAR Camping World Truck Series playoff driver.
Finishing 1.212 seconds behind Chandler Smith wasn’t overly comforting to Sammy Smith, though.
“Yeah, just got too tight there in the end, I think,” Sammy Smith told Frontstretch post-race. “That restart was tough. I don’t know, I feel like a good job. He was able to get me, just couldn’t get back by him.”
Sammy Smith fended off Chandler Smith several times throughout the 200-lap race.
— ARCA Menards Series (@ARCA_Racing) July 29, 2022
Sammy Smith also led the ARCA field to the first competition caution.
Still, with a minuscule chance of winning the ARCA title, Smith didn’t take comfort in his eighth top-five finish in only 10 career ARCA races.
“It feels good, doesn’t really mean anything if you don’t win,” Smith said. “We’ll take a second and move on.”
— Kyle Busch Motorsports (@KBMteam) July 30, 2022
ARCA next heads to 2-mile Michigan International Speedway. It’ll be Smith’s first time at that course.
“Yeah, I am excited,” he said. “It’ll be a good challenge and I’m looking forward to it.”
About the author
Mark Kristl joined Frontstretch at the beginning of the 2019 NASCAR season. He is the site's ARCA Menards Series editor. Kristl is also an Eagle Scout and a proud University of Dayton alum.
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