Smith Finishes 30th in Atlanta

HAMPTON, Ga. (Oct. 26, 2008) – Describing the race as one of the toughest of his young career, Regan Smith finished 30th in Sunday’s Pep Boys Auto 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
“Our biggest problem was the handling on the car,” Smith said. “It was loose all day. We tried a bunch of different stuff to fix it, but nothing seemed to help. It was a tough day for us, but I think we learned a lot that we’ll be able to use when we come back next spring. This was only my second Cup race here, so it’s all part of the learning process.”
Qualifying was rained out once again, meaning Smith and the No. 01 DEI/Principal Financial Group Chevrolet would start in the 32nd position based on 2008 owner points.
“The weather on Friday really hurt us,” continued Smith. “We practiced in cold, damp conditions and when the race began it was sunny and warmer. The track was so different from practice, and I think that hurt us in trying to find the right setup. We’ll get better in figuring this stuff out as we get more experience under our belts.
“I have to give (crew chief) Dan (Stillman) and the guys credit – they never gave up. Even though our day wasn’t as good as we would have liked, we brought the car home in one piece and gained some valuable seat time. I’m proud of the way the guys hung in there. That’s all you can ask from your team.”