Race Weekend Central

Sammy Smith Takes 1st Career Xfinity Pole at Martinsville

Sammy Smith will lead the field to green for the very first time in his career in the NASCAR Xfinity Series at Martinsville Speedway following a 94.515 mph lap that saw him best Justin Allgaier for the pole.

The Dead On Tools 250 is the final race of the Xfinity Series playoffs Round of 8 and will determine the four drivers that will compete for a championship at Phoenix Raceway. Smith is currently sixth in the standings, 49 points below the cutline, so a victory is likely needed for him to advance. So far, he has put himself in a position to do just that.

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“We knew coming into here we needed to have our act together and we did that thanks to everybody on the No. 18 team,” Smith said in his post-qualifying interview. “Just got to keep up with the track tomorrow and do our jobs and I feel like we have the car to do it.

“I feel like a couple of things I needed to do as a driver, I feel like we got those squared away and hopefully we can put it together tomorrow,” Smith added on what he took from his runner-up finish at Martinsville earlier on in the season.

Allgaier will be beside him on the front row with a speed of 94.458 mph, bettering his time by a considerable margin over his first lap.

The drivers who completed the top five starters are Cole Custer, who ran a 94.439 mph lap; Riley Herbst, with a 94.218 mph lap; and John Hunter Nemechek, who clocked in with a speed of 94.148 mph.

Rounding out the top 10 will be Brandon Jones, Chandler Smith, Sheldon Creed, Austin Hill and Parker Retzlaff.

The only playoff driver who qualified outside of the top 10 was Sam Mayer, who will start the race from 17th. However, Mayer is the only driver locked into the Championship 4 with his win at Homestead Miami Speedway on Oct. 21.

Jeb Burton will start from the back of the field due to a radiator replacement that prevented him from qualifying.

Timmy Hill was the only driver who did not qualify for Saturday’s race.

Martinsville Xfinity Starting Lineup

The Xfinity Series will decide the Championship 4 at Martinsville on Saturday, Oct. 28 at 3:30 p.m. ET. Television coverage will be provided by USA Network.

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