Speeding Penalties Spoil Strong Run for Smith, Furniture Row Racing
DOVER, Del. (Sept. 26, 2010) -- Regan Smith was cruising in a fast race car during Sunday's AAA 400 Sprint Cup race at Dover International Speedway. But back-to-back pit-road speeding penalties past the midway point of the event proved costly for the Furniture Row Racing driver, who saw a potential top-15 finish turn into a 26th-place result.
"I feel awful because we had a good car today and didn't take advantage of what we had," said Smith. "Those two speeding penalties cost us big time in track position. The team gave me a fast car and we were much better than where we finished."
Driving the No. 78 Furniture Row Chevrolet, Smith was running in 17th place when he entered pit road for a green-flag stop on Lap 267 of 400. He was cited by NASCAR for speeding and was assessed a pass-through penalty. As he came down pit road for the pass-through, he was cited again for speeding and returned to pit road for a stop and go penalty.
The two speeding penalties put Smith three laps down.
"A devastating turn of events, but on the positive side we had another solid weekend in terms of performance," stated Smith, who qualified 18th during Friday's time trials at the one-mile all-concrete oval.
Smith's No. 78 Chevrolet showed its mettle early in the race when Smith caught the leaders and got back on the lead lap. No "Lucky Dog" free pass was needed.
"Our performance has indeed picked up thanks to the commitment from our ownership and all of the hard work by the guys at the track and at the shop," noted Smith. "What's been disappointing is that our finishes have not always equaled our performance level."
The race winner was Jimmie Johnson. Rounding out the top-five in order were: Jeff Burton, Joey Logano, Kurt Busch and Carl Edwards.
The next Sprint Cup race is Sunday (Oct. 3) at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan.