Sammy Smith – No. 18 Pilot Flying J Toyota GR Supra Preview – The Loop 121 at Chicago Street Race

No. 18 Pilot Flying J Toyota GR Supra News and Notes: 

  • CHICAGO: The NASCAR Xfinity Series (NXS) takes on the Windy City as NASCAR hosts its first street race in downtown Chicago this weekend. The course is a 12-turn, 2.2 mile configuration laid out near Chicago landmarks Buckingham Fountain and Grant Park.   
  • NASHVILLE RECAP: Sammy Smith started last week’s NXS race at Nashville in third place. The No. 18 ran in the top-10 throughout the first stage and finished the stage in fifth, collecting stage points. Smith was still running in the top-10 during Stage 2 before being spun on lap 64. The spin resulted in heavy damage to the No. 18 and ended Smith’s day at Nashville relegating him to a 34th-place finish. 
  • ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: Smith is eligible to compete for the 2023 NXS Sunoco Rookie of the Year (ROTY). The other drivers competing for the title are Chandler Smith, Parker Retzlaff, and Blaine Perkins. 
  • ARCA EAST CHAMPION x2: Smith defended his 2021 ARCA Menards Series East (AMSE) Championship in 2022 on the strength of five wins and a top-five finish in all of the AMSE races. He also won four ARCA Menards Series races and one ARCA Menards Series West race in 2022.   
  • ON THE PITBOX: Crew Chief Jeff Meendering will head up the No. 18 team during the 2023 season. He has visited Victory Lane seven times as a NXS crew chief, most recently with Smith at Phoenix in March 2023. His teams have collected 56 top-five finishes, 114 top-10 finishes, and 11 pole positions under his leadership. 
  • FOLLOW ALONG: Follow along for updates and a behind-the-scenes look at Smith’s 2023 NXS Seasons.  

Twitter: @SammySmithSS I Facebook: Sammy Smith Racing I Instagram:  @sammysmithss_ 

  • RACE INFO: The NXS The Lop 121 at Chicago Street Race is scheduled for 5:00 PM EST on Saturday, July 1. The race will be broadcast on USA, MRN, Sirius XM and available to stream on the NBC Sports app. 

From the Driver’s Seat: 

Sammy Smith: “This weekend is going to be interesting. I’m excited to try out a new track, but since the Xfinity race will be the first one on the track, we are just going to have to see what happens. I think the race will be one of survival and figuring the track out as we go, but hopefully we can be there at the end with a shot to put the No. 18 Pilot Flying J Toyota GR Supra in Victory Lane.”

Smith’s 2023 NASCAR Xfinity Series Stats: 

Starts 

Wins 

Top 5 

Top 10 

Poles 

Laps Led 

Avg. Start 

Avg. Finish 

15 

153 

10.7 

15.4 

 

Smith’s Career NASCAR Xfinity Series Stats: 

Starts 

Wins 

Top 5 

Top 10 

Poles 

Laps Led 

Avg. Start 

Avg. Finish 

24 

171 

9.3 

16.2 

 JGR P