Smith Giving Back At Mid-Ohio
No. 7 TaxSlayer.com Chevrolet
Regan Smith will visit Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, on Thursday prior to the race to help promote the hospital and its work with chronically ill children. The No. 7 TaxSlayer.com Chevrolet will carry a special paint scheme designed by his Patient Champion, Laynie Roll.
“I’m proud to be part of the Patient Champion program this year, thanks to the good folks at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and Nationwide, which has been a great supporter of JR Motorsports for many years. I look forward to carrying the paint scheme Laynie helped design, and a victory would be a great way to make it a great day for Laynie and for our team. Big thanks to TaxSlayer for donating their race for this wonderful cause.”
Nine-year-old Laynie Roll, from Kingston, Ohio, suffers from a condition known as dystonia, which is involuntary muscle contraction. The effervescent Laynie is a fashion icon, wants to be a veterinarian and own a cupcake bakery shop when she grows up. Asked what the coolest part of having her face on the No. 7 Chevrolet was, she replied, “When Regan wins the race, I cross the finish line first, since my picture is on the hood!”
Last time out at Mid-Ohio, Smith finished second to Chris Buescher in an extra-distance race on the 2.258-mile road course. The effort was Smith’s first top-five finish in two starts at the facility.
All the momentum of a runner-up finish at Iowa the week previous evaporated at Watkins Glen. Running third on a restart midway through the race, Smith was dumped in Turn 1 and fell all the way back to 29th. Another incident did significant damage to Smith’s car, and he eventually finished 20th. That cost Smith 18 points.
Smith’s season has seen a few big swings in the point standings, starting with a 35th -place finish in the season opener at Daytona. He had gained 27 points on the leader over the four races heading to Watkins Glen, but will now have to make up 57 points in the remaining 12 races to have a chance to win it at Homestead. Smith has to gain 4.75 points per race on Buescher over that span to have a chance at the title.
Keep up with JR Motorsports driver Regan Smith (@ReganSmith) on Twitter. You can also follow the JRM team (@JRMotorsports) or check in on the JR Motorsports Facebook page.