NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Overview:
Mr. Smith Goes to Vegas:
- Chandler Smith and the No. 18 Safelite AutoGlass team head to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the first mile-and-a-half race on the Camping World Truck Series schedule this season. Running a partial schedule last season, Smith made four starts on 1.5-mile tracks, earning a best result of fifth twice, including the September event at Las Vegas.
- Smith is off to a solid start in his rookie Camping World Trucks Campaign. He sits fourth in the championship standings, 30 tallies behind points leader Ben Rhodes, after finishing ninth at Daytona (Fla.) International Speedway and 12th at the Daytona Road Course. His average finish of 10.5 is not indicative of his performance in the first two events, his average running position so far this season is 7.7 and he has scored points in three of the four stages.
- The 18-year-old Georgia native will compete for the Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award in 2021 after competing in a part-time schedule for KBM each of the last two seasons. Smith earned the Sunoco Rookie of the Race Award at the Daytona Road Course and after two events leads the rookie standings by 30 points over Carson Hocevar.
- The Toyota Development Driver has finished inside the top five in eight of his 18 career Camping World Truck Series starts, including a career-best runner-up finish at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway in 2019. Smith posted an average finish of 7.7 across his final seven of 12 total Truck Series starts in 2020, including third-place finishes in the series finale at Phoenix (Ariz.) Raceway and his first career superspeedway start at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway in October.
- The talented teenager recorded nine wins, 10 poles and an average finish of 5.3 across 33 ARCA Menards Series starts the last three seasons. He captured the pole in his series debut at Fairgrounds Speedway in Nashville (Tenn.) in April of 2018 and set an ARCA Menards Series record by winning four consecutive poles to start his career. He earned his first victory at Madison (Wis.) International Speedway in just his fourth series start in June of 2018. Despite running a part-time schedule, he led the series in laps led in both 2018 and 2019.
- Veteran crew chief Danny Stockman will call the shots for Smith and the No. 18 team this season. Stockman led the No. 51 team to four wins in his first season atop the pit box at KBM in 2020. He came to the organization with experience as a crew chief in all three national series, including a Truck Series championship with Austin Dillon in 2011 and an XFINITY Series championship with Dillon in 2013. Stockman’s XFINITY Series drivers totaled seven wins and 19 poles from 2012 to 2018 and after last season his Truck Series totals stand at eight wins and 13 poles.
- Stockman guided KBM owner-driver Kyle Busch to a dominant victory in last year’s Camping World Trucks event at Las Vegas. He also was victorious with Dillon in 2010 at the Nevada track.
- Safelite AutoGlass – the nation’s largest provider of vehicle glass repair, replacement, and recalibration services – will be the primary sponsor of Smith’s Tundra for 15 races this season. Safelite will be back on the No. 18 Toyota when the Camping World Truck Series resumes action March 20 at Atlanta (Ga.) Motor Speedway.
Chandler Smith, Driver Q&A:
How much of a challenge was it last year learning to race on the mile-and-a-half tracks?
“It’s definitely a learning curve and something new to learn. I feel like myself as a driver that I have gotten better at them, but there is still room for improvement. Overall, as an organization, I feel like our entire 1.5-mile program has gotten stronger. I’m looking forward to it.”
Las Vegas is the first mile-and-a-half track that you are going to for a second time. Does that boost your confidence?
“I’ve raced at Las Vegas once and we had a strong finish at the end coming out fifth. We’re going back with a similar package, so I’m ready for it. It’s going to be a little cooler. It’s my second time going back, so I’m expecting good results in our Safelite Tundra and hopefully we can bring home the trophy.”
Are you looking forward to racing against Kyle for the first time in the Camping World Truck Series?
“I’ve raced against Kyle in Super Late Models and learned a tremendous amount from racing against him there. I feel like I am going to get the same results when it comes to truck racing. Obviously, the bigger picture is to come out and beat him. I would love nothing more than that, so that is the goal.”
Chandler Smith Career Highlights:
- Across 18 career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts has recorded 115 laps led, eight top-five and 10 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 12.1.
- Posted an average finish of 7.7 across his final seven of 12 total Truck Series starts in 2020, including third-place finishes in the series finale at Phoenix (Ariz.) Raceway and his first career superspeedway start at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway in October.
- Produced three top-five and four top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 4.2 across his first four career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series starts in 2019. He led 55 laps and finished eighth in his Gander Trucks debut at Iowa Speedway last July and then posted top-five finishes in his final three starts, including a runner-up finish at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway.
- Has collected nine wins, 10 poles, 1761 laps led, 22 top-five and 29 top-10 finishes en route to an average finish of 5.2 across 33 career ARCA Menards Series starts. Set an ARCA Racing Series record by winning four consecutive poles to start his career and earned his first victory after leading a race-high 102 laps at Madison (Wis.) International Speedway in his fourth series start.
Chandler Smith’s No. 18 JBL Tundra:
KBM-070: The No. 18 Safelite AutoGlass team will unload chassis number KBM-070, a brand new Tundra, for Friday night’s Bucked up 200 at Las Vegas.
KBM Notes of Interest:
- KBM drivers have collected four wins, four poles, 12 top-five and 19 top-10 finishes across 36 starts at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. They have earned a collective average starting position of 7.9 an average finish of 12.2 and have led 545 laps.
- Erik Jones won the 2014 event while owner-driver Kyle Busch won in the spring of 2018, 2019 and 2020.
- KBM holds the Camping World Truck Series records for most career wins (80) and most wins in a single season (14 in 2014). In addition to collecting a series-record seven Owner’s Championships, the organization has produced two championship-winning drivers: Erik Jones (2015) and Christopher Bell (2017).
- The No. 18, the number which was on the first Tundra that went to victory lane for KBM in 2010, has 21 career victories.