Go Time For Smith In Phoenix

No. 7 TaxSlayer.com Chevrolet

This weekend’s event is go-time for Smith and the rest of the No. 7 team, as just two races remain in their quest for the inaugural NASCAR XFINITY Series championship. Smith is in striking distance to leader Chris Buescher, just 31 points out, but needs a strong performance to cut the lead before the finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

 “I’ve had a good season on 1-mile ovals in 2015. We won and finished third at Dover, finished ninth here in the spring and ran seventh at Loudon, so we have the car to do well. It’s down to crunch time for the title, and we have to be good and have some trouble hit the guys ahead of us. We had a fast car at Texas, but didn’t get the finish we needed to gain much ground. We have to have some help to get there, and we’re going to give it everything we’ve got on our end.”

The familiar red-and-white colors of longtime JRM partner TaxSlayer.com return to the No. 7 Chevrolet this weekend at Phoenix.

Over the past five races, Smith has four top-five and five top-10 finishes after rolling to ninth place last week at Texas. Smith has been money on 1-mile tracks this season, winning and finishing third at Dover and adding top-10 runs at both Phoenix and Loudon. Average finishing position for Smith on 1-mile ovals this season is a stellar 5.0.

31 DOWN, 2 TO GO
With just two races left in the season, Smith has clear-cut numbers to shoot for in the battle for the title. He’s 31 points behind, so he and the No. 7 team need a shakeup and a solid performance at Phoenix. Buescher averages 13.7 per finish at Phoenix, while title rivals Ty Dillon (6.7) and Chase Elliott (7.0) are better statistically. Smith slots in with an 8.4 average finish in five races there with JRM.

Since coming to JRM, Smith has shown an affinity to running well west of the Mississippi River. In his tenure at JR Motorsports, Smith boasts average finishes of 6.7 at both Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Iowa Speedway, and his average in the last three seasons at Phoenix is a solid 7.0. He has equally solid 7.1 average finishes at both Texas Motor Speedway and Auto Club Speedway in California. In three starts at Kansas, he has an average finish of 10th. Despite his success out West, he has yet to win a race out there. He was second at Iowa in August, his best run there, and has third-place runs at Kansas, Las Vegas and California this season. He has a fourth-place run at Phoenix as his best, which came in 2013.

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.

Smith at Phoenix (NXS):

  Starts 9
  Wins 0
  Top 5's 1
  Top 10's 5
  Poles 0
  Laps Led 9
  Avg. Start 8.8
  Avg. Finish 14.4

Smith 2015 Season Stats (NXS):

  Starts 31
  Wins 2
  Top 5's 11
  Top 10's 24
  Poles 0
  Laps Led 160
  Avg. Start 8.5
  Avg. Finish 9.1

Smith Career Stats (NXS):

  Starts 200
  Wins 6
  Top 5's 30
  Top 10's 76
  Poles 1
  Laps Led 621
  Avg. Start 16.1
  Avg. Finish 17.6