Date: March 20, 2021
Event: Fr8Auctions 200 (Race 4 of 22)
Series: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series
Location: Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton, Ga. (1.54-mile, quad-oval)
Format: Three Stages; 30 laps/30 laps/70 laps
Start/Finish: 11th/35th (Running, completed 124 of 130 laps)
Winner: Kyle Busch of Kyle Busch Motorsports (Toyota)
Georgia native and three-time Atlanta Motor Speedway Bandolero Bandits Division champion Chandler Smith had been looking forward to his first race on the 1.54-mile circuit at his home state track. Unfortunately for Smith, a parts failure in the right front of his Safelite Tundra caused him to visit pit road for unexpected pit stops twice in the event and relegated the 18-year-old driver to a disappointing 35th-place finish.
Stage One Recap:
- Smith started from the 11th position based on NASCAR’s performance-matrix formula.
- The Georgia native radioed to his team that he felt like he had a flat tire. As the condition worsened, the young driver brought the Safelite Tundra to the attention of his over-the-wall under green-flag conditions on Lap 8.
- After putting on fresh left-side tires and not seeing an issue, crew chief Danny Stockman ordered his crew to check the right-side tries, where they also didn’t find a flat.
- The No. 18 Toyota returned to the track one lap down in the 40th position.
- Before the competition caution, Kyle Busch lapped a few trucks and kept Smith from being able to get the free pass.
- Having already bolted on two fresh tires, Stockman elected for a fuel-only stop with a chassis adjustment during the competition caution.
- Smith raced his way up to the 36th position and was awarded the free pass at the completion of Stage One on Lap 30.
Stage Two Recap:
- The Safelite Tundra would line up 34th when Stage Two went green on Lap 37.
- Smith maneuvered his way up to the 17th spot to complete Stage Two.
Final Stage Recap:
- Before hitting pit road, Smith communicated that the underneath of his Tundra was still making contact with the racetrack causing it to be uncontrollable at times.
- After a pit stop for four fresh Goodyear tires, the Toyota Racing Development driver started on the bottom of the eighth row.
- On Lap 80, the Georgia native radioed that the issue that had plagued them throughout the race was worsening and once again hit pit road under green-flag conditions.
- After a lengthy stay in his pit stall, Smith returned to the track but would go on to finish the race six laps down in the 35th position.
Fr8Auctions 200 Recap:
- Smith’s boss, Kyle Busch, dominated the race, leading a race-high 102 laps en route to his first victory of 2021 and the 60th of his Truck Series career. Austin Hill finished 4.133 seconds behind Busch in the runner-up position. John Hunter Nemechek, Johnny Sauter and Sheldon Creed rounded out the top-five finishers.
- There were seven lead changes among four different drivers. KBM drivers combined to lead 123 of the 130 laps. There were three cautions for 16 laps.
How Smith’s KBM Teammates Fared:
- Kyle Busch, driver of the No. 51 Toyota, finished first.
- John Hunter Nemechek, driver of the No. 4 Toyota, finished third.
Camping World Trucks Driver Championship Standings:
Smith and the No. 18 Safelite team fell six spots in the Camping World Truck Series championship standings. Smith leaves the fourth race on the Camping World Truck Series schedule in the 11th position, 112 tallies behind his KBM teammate Nemecheck.
Smith will be behind the wheel of the No. 18 JBL Tundra when the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series resumes action on Saturday March 27 at Bristol (Tenn.) Motor Speedway Dirt. Live coverage of the Pinty’s Truck Race on Dirt will be on FS1, Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM at 8 p.m. ET.