Smith, Mayer Lead the Way for JRM In Atlanta NXS Round

JR Motorsports | 2/26/2024

Atlanta Brandon Jones Justin Allgaier News Sam Mayer Sammy Smith

Sammy Smith led JR Motorsports' effort on Saturday at Atlanta with a 10th-place finish, in the RAPTOR King of Tough 250. A late-race caution forced fuel strategy into play for all four JRM Chevrolets.

 

Race 2 of 33: RAPTOR King of Tough 250 at Atlanta Motor Speedway
Track Specs: 1.54-mile quad-oval / 169 laps
Race Winner: Austin Hill
Smith's finish: 10th 
Mayer's finish: 11th
Jones' finish: 14th 
Allgaier's finish: 28th
 

Sammy Smith

Sammy Smith, driver of the No. 1 Pilot Flying J Chevrolet, qualified 14th at Atlanta Motor Speedway for his second start with JR Motorsports. Smith quickly moved up into the top 10, where he ran for all 40 laps of Stage One. More movement took place during Stage Two, where Smith raced into the top five and felt comfortable with his car and the team's fuel-saving efforts. Smith found his teammates and rode in between Sam Mayer and Justin Allgaier for the majority of the final laps as they devised a plan to move toward the front while continuing their fuel-saving efforts. Unfortunately, a last-minute caution depleted the fuel under yellow, but the No. 8 crew was able to fuel him up in time before the green-white-checkered restart. Smith fought his way back to a 10th-place finish even after restarting at the tail of the field.

"My Pilot Flying J crew gave me a solid car today at Atlanta and we made some moves at the beginning and settled into the top 10 with our teammates. The last few laps were a little hairy but my crew pulled through and I'm happy with our finish here tonight. I'm looking forward to continuing the consistency and building off our momentum next week at Las Vegas."

Sam Mayer

Sam Mayer, driver of the No. 1 Raptor High Heat Chevrolet, started Saturday evening's 163-lap event in sixth position after a solid qualifying effort on Friday afternoon. Mayer held strong in third for the majority of Stage One to gain seven stage points as the green-and-white-checkered flag fell for a third-place finish. The first caution for cause fell on lap 58 and the No. 1 Chevrolet pulled down pit road for four tires and fuel. The young driver fell back to finish 17th in Stage Two. After a hard-fought battle in the closing laps, a caution came out and Mayer lost the fuel battle, which forced him to pit under yellow with two laps to go in the race. Despite having to pit for fuel, Mayer rallied back to earn an 11th-place finish under the lights at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

"We had a really fast No. 1 Raptor High Heat Chevrolet all weekend and I am so fortunate to have this team build me such a great car. We ran where we needed to and stayed in line, but unfortunately our fuel save got the best of us and we fell back a few spots. Happy to get back up front and ready to head to Las Vegas to see what we can do there."

Brandon Jones

Back at his home track of Atlanta Motor Speedway, Brandon Jones, driver of the No. 9 Menards/ Atlas Chevrolet started the race from the tail-end of the field after requiring an electrical repair post-qualifying. Jones managed to avoid the single caution in Stage One and work his way through the field, ending the stage within the top 20. Due to a pit-stop penalty, Jones started Stage Two at the back of the pack and once again had to work his way to the front. A race off pit road on lap 82 earned Jones 12 more spots, propelling him to the top 10 for the first time in the race. Once there, he maintained the sixth position when the race moved into overtime. During the green-white-checkered finish, Jones had a right-side tire go flat causing him to drop back in the field, ultimately finishing 14th.

"It is always a great time coming back to my home track of Atlanta. This track is really unique because even though it has been repaved it still has a lot of characteristics of some of the older tracks. We had a setback with the electrical issue after qualifying, but this No. 9 team got it taken care of and put out a fast racecar that was able to work through the field. I wish we could have landed that top-10, but we will continue improving as we head on to Vegas."

Justin Allgaier

Justin Allgaier appeared poised to fight for the victory heading into the overtime restart on Saturday evening in the NASCAR Xfinity Series event at Atlanta Motor Speedway. However, with the entire field being close on fuel in the closing laps, Allgaier was forced to relinquish his third-place position to bring the Jarrett Chevrolet to pit road for fuel ahead of the lap-167 restart. As a result of the untimely journey to pit road, Allgaier crossed under the finish line for the final time in the 28th position. Despite the result, the JR Motorsports driver was able to secure valuable stage points at the conclusion of both Stage One and Two, scoring seventh- and second-place results in the process.

"We were in the right position there at the end to battle it out for the win with our Jarrett Chevrolet. I just wish the fuel could have held on for that one last restart there. It was an unfortunate end but I can't say enough about the speed this Jarrett Chevrolet had. Jim (Pohlman, crew chief) and everyone on this JR Motorsports team prepared a great car for tonight. We will move past this and regroup and be ready to get after it next weekend in Las Vegas."

 

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XFINITY Series Schedule

  • March 2 05:00 PM ET
    The LiUNA!Las Vegas Motor Speedway
  • March 9 04:30 PM ET
    NXS Race at PhoenixPhoenix Raceway
  • March 23 05:00 PM ET
    NASCAR Xfinity 250Circuit of the Americas
  • March 30 01:30 PM ET
    ToyotaCare 250Richmond Raceway
  • April 6 07:30 PM ET
    NXS Spring Race at MartinsvilleMartinsville Speedway

XFINITY Series Standings

After Dead On Tools 250

Martinsville Speedway | 10/28/2023
Results are not available.