By: Ashley McCubbin
Sammy Smith will head into this weekend’s ARCA Menards Series East event at Nashville Fairgrounds leading the points standings, just a mere two markers ahead of Taylor Gray.
The Kyle Busch Motorsports driver shared his thoughts on the weekend ahead and more with NEWS FROM THE PITS.
ASHLEY MCCUBBIN: What are your thoughts going into Nashville this weekend?
SAMMY SMITH: I feel really good about. I get to run both the ARCA and Super Late Models so I feel really good going there. Hopefully we can get two guitars.
ASHLEY: What’s the biggest challenge when it comes to Nashville?
SAMMY: Probably just getting both cars through the bumps. It’s really bumpy, the track is worn out, old. Tire fall off will be big so having a good run long run car that gets through the bumps will be big. I think that’s what you’ll need to be able to win.
ASHLEY: What are your thoughts on how your season has played out to date?
SAMMY: I feel it’s been pretty good. I wish we could’ve had a bit better run at Phoenix and a little better run at Dover, but we had some issues there that took us out of contention. We’ve got two ARCA wins and I have a couple super wins so I feel good going into it, and hopefully we can get a few more.
ASHLEY: I know on the East Series side, you’ve been going back and forth with Taylor Gray. What’s the rivalry been like so far?
SAMMY: Yeah, it’s been really good. We race good together, clean, but really hard. Taylor is a really good competitor and it pushes us to both keep trying to get better.
ASHLEY: There was also a couple changes this off-season, as you’re under the Kyle Busch Motorsports banner rather than Joe Gibbs Racing. How has the change been for you?
SAMMY: Not a big change. KBM, I used to race for them in 2020 with the super so I know a lot of the guys from when I used to race there in 2020. It’s really not a big change, just different atmosphere, but same thing and trying to bring good cars every week. Their expectations are high to come to the track, lead lap, and wins. We try to do that every week and hopefully continue to do that.
ASHLEY: Even though you’re currently leading the points, but what do you feel that you need to do better as a driver?
SAMMY: I think probably be a little more consistent. We had that tough day at Dover on Friday and had some issues that took us out of contention. We finished fifth there, and lost quite a bit of points with him doing everything to get points he could. I think just trying to win races, lead laps, and get poles. That’s all you can ask for.
ASHLEY: Seeing the way your career is projecting so far as a series champion, a lot of people are looking forward to seeing you move up to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. How much are you excited for that outlook in knowing that’s down the road for you possibly?
SAMMY: Obviously, hopefully that’s down the road but at this time, I don’t think about that. My focus right now is on Nashville and winning there. Hopefully we can move up, but all that matters is winning and continue to try to do the best that I can. Hopefully we can get there, but right now, my focus is on Nashville.
ASHLEY: I know right now you’re focus is on stock cars, but is there anything else you would like to get behind the wheel of?
SAMMY: Honestly, probably, maybe a dirt car here and there, but not really. I just want to focus on stock cars and trying to be the best that I can in those.