Truck Series Contender Sets Date for Xfinity Debut

Chandler Smith

Getty Chandler Smith celebrates a win at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

The defending NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Rookie of the Year is about to make his Xfinity Series debut. Three-time winner Chandler Smith has signed a deal with Sam Hunt Racing.

SHR announced the news on April 14 with a press release. The team noted that Smith had signed on for three races, starting with the trip to Talladega Superspeedway on Saturday, April 23. The Kyle Busch Motorsports driver will also suit up for races at Dover Motor Speedway (April 30) and Homestead-Miami Speedway (October 22). He will have Charge Me as his primary partner for all three races.

“It’s definitely going to be exciting,” Smith said in the press release. “The experience just being able to come up and do a longer race and have more pit stops with a different car instead of a truck is going to be all in all a lot different than what I’m accustomed to. I’m really looking forward to the challenge.

“It’s big for me to join Sam’s team. SHR is still kind of a smaller team. They are still learning a lot and in their baby years, and I feel like I may have a little bit to bring to the table myself to help them excel and to bring a new aspect to the team. Hopefully, I can be an asset and help a little bit with their development and growth. I can’t wait to be a small part of this team’s huge success as it continues to grow.”

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Smith Continues to Contend for Truck Series Wins

Chandler Smith

GettyChandler Smith prepares for practice at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

The Georgia native is fairly early in his national Series career considering that he only has 43 career starts in the Truck Series. He is only in his second full-time season for KBM, but he has made the most of his opportunities.

Smith won Rookie of the Year in 2021 after two major wins. He won his first career race on September 16, which moved him on to the Round of Eight. Smith did not reach the championship four, but he sealed his Rookie of the Year title by capturing the final race at Phoenix on November 5.

Smith is back in the playoffs after an early 2022 win. He won the second race of the year, which took place at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, after holding off his boss during the final run to the checkered flag. Smith has since rattled off two top-five finishes and one top-10 to move into second place in the championship standings.

Smith Joins a Packed List of Drivers

Sam Hunt Racing

GettySam Hunt Racing has featured numerous drivers in 2022.

Smith is not the only member of KBM to take on Xfinity Series races for Sam Hunt Racing. Teammate John Hunter Nemechek also kicked off his schedule by taking on the race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and finishing 12th overall. He added a fifth-place finish at Phoenix Raceway.

The list of drivers is sizable. Jeffrey Earnhardt has made three starts for SHR while Ryan Truex and Parker Chase have each made one. Derek Griffith has made the two most recent starts, which took place at Richmond Raceway and Martinsville Speedway.

Our entire organization is excited to add Chandler to our roster,” said team owner Sam Hunt. “His ability speaks for itself and it will be fun to begin his transition from the Truck Series into the Xfinity series here at SHR. These races will serve as a great opportunity for him to learn these cars, how they drive, and how the races flow at this level. Seeing his success in the Truck Series, there’s no reason he can’t be competitive out of the gate with us.

“Our spotter, Chris Lambert, works with Chandler at KBM, making this transition even simpler. We’re also proud to partner with the ChargeMe brand for these races, and cannot thank Bill and his entire team for coming on board. It’s going to be a fun couple of races and a great next step for Chandler’s climb in NASCAR.”

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