Smith Battles to 21st-Place Finish at Pocono Raceway
August 7, 2011
Despite handling issues with his No. 78 Furniture Row Chevrolet, Regan Smith managed to post a 21st-place finish in Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Pocono Raceway.
Smith, who started 17th, could not find consistency with the car's combination throughout the 200-lap, 500-mile race, which was red-flagged due to rain on Lap 124 for 1 hour, 40 minutes.
"We chased the setup today," said Smith. "We had some good runs, but overall the car's handling was an issue and we fought hard to finish where we did. There was that one green-flag run where we passed eight or nine cars and I thought we had the handling solved. But unfortunately that wasn't the case. There was a time when we would have been pleased finishing 21st, but we're at another level of competition and expect to have better finishes."
Smith remained 26th in the driver standings, only two points out of 25th and seven out of 24th.
"We have a lot of races remaining before the season ends in late November and we intend to keep on improving," stated Smith, who has notched a win, two top fives and four top 10s this season.
As Smith was leaving the Pocono facility his focus and thoughts were already on next weekend's race in Watkins Glen, N.Y., which will be the second and final road race of the season.
"Watkins Glen is my home track," said Smith, who grew up in Cato, N.Y. near Syracuse. "I have a lot of family and friends coming to the race and you always want to put on a good performance for them. I am really looking forward to spending some time next week in central New York."
The Pocono race winner was Brad Keselowski. Rounding out the top-five in order were: Kyle Busch, Kurt Busch, Jimmie Johnson and Ryan Newman.