Having already locked himself into the Round of 8 with a dominant win at Richmond (Va.) Raceway, Chandler Smith came into Kansas Speedway with nothing to lose. Smith started the race from the fifth position and ran inside the top 10 for the majority of the 134-lap event, ultimately bringing home a sixth-place finish.
With his 28 playoff points earned so far this season, Smith will be second on the playoff grid, 15 points above the cutoff line for advancing to the Championship 4, when the Round of 8 starts Thursday night at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway
Stage One Recap:
- Smith started the 134-lap race from the fifth position after posting a lap of 31.034 seconds at 174.003 mph in Friday afternoon’s qualifying session.
- Throughout the opening stanza, Smith communicated that the Safelite Tundra was “wrecking free” as he slid back a few positions and finished the Stage One in eighth.
Stage Two Recap:
- With a spot in the Round of 8 already solidified, crew chief Danny Stockman ordered up a large list of adjustments on the first pit stop. After getting four fresh tires, a full tank of fuel and trackbar and packer adjustments the Safelite Tundra was the 22nd truck to exit pit road.
- Smith elected to restart from the top of the 13th row when Stage Two went green on lap 37. 10 laps later the Georgia driver was back inside the top 15 and communicated, “still free but it’s more manageable.”
- A two-truck accident on the backstretch brought out a caution on lap 57 and the stage would end under yellow with Smith in the 13th position.
Final Stage Recap:
- Before hitting pit road, Smith communicated to Stockman “little tight on exit, I about knock the wall down if I commit to the throttle.”
- After a four tire and fuel stop, with an air pressure adjustment, the 20-year-old driver elected to line up on the top of the fifth row when the Final Stage went green on lap 64.
- After an early caution, Smith lined up on the bottom of the fifth row on the ensuing restart. He began to make his way forward, reaching the seventh position when the fourth and final caution of the race flew on lap 74. With not being inside the pit window to make it to the end of the race on fuel, Stockman kept his driver on track to maintain the track position that they had just earned.
- Under caution, Smith communicated, “I think I have something to work with here.” The Safelite Tundra lined up on the top of the fourth row when the field went back green on lap 81. When the field settled in line Smith was scored in the sixth position.
- As the race continued under green-flag conditions, Smith reported that his Toyota was “tight late exit,” as he continued to be scored in the sixth position. Stockman summoned his young driver to pit road under green on lap 103 for four fresh tires and enough fuel to make it to the end of the 134-lap event.
- With eight drivers that pitted during the lap-75 caution remaining on track, Smith returned to the track in the 14th position.
- As the lands wound down, several of those trucks made their final stop, but a handful stayed on track looking to stretch it to the end. With three laps remaining the No. 18 Tundra made its way back into the sixth position and was unable to gain any more positions.
Kansas Lottery 200 Race Recap:
- John Hunter Nemechek earned his second NASCAR Camping World Truck Series win of 2022 and will advance to the Round of 8. It was his 13th career victory. Carson Hocevar, Ryan Preece, Zane Smith, and Grant Enfinger rounded out the top-five finishers.
- There were four cautions for 25 laps and 11 lead changes among six drivers.
How Smith’s KBM Teammates Fared:
- John Hunter Nemechek, driver of the No. 4 Toyota, finished first
- Corey Heim, driver of the No. 51 Toyota, finished seventh.
Camping World Trucks Playoff Standings:
Smith finished the round of 10 second on the playoff grid, 21 points behind his KBM teammate John Hunter Nemechek. With the points resetting before Thursday’s race at Bristol, Smith will start the Round of 8 second on the grid nine points behind Zane Smith and 15 points above the cutoff line for advancing to the Championship 4.
Smith will be behind the wheel of the No. 18 Safelite Tundra TRD Pro when the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series heads to Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway Sept. 15 for the opening race of the Round of 8. Live coverage of the UNOH 200 will be on FS1, Motor Racing Network, and SiriusXM at 9 p.m. ET. Smith is the defending winner of the Bristol race