Ty Dillon will fill in for Regan Smith in the No. 7 Tommy Baldwin Racing (TBR) Chevrolet this week. Smith will return home to be with his wife at the birth of their child, according to NASCAR.com.
At first glance, Regan Smith would seem to be a solid dark horse for Darlington Raceway. He won the 2011 Southern 500, has one more top-15, and a top-20 in six starts. Fantasy owners will want to take a closer look at when and for whom those results were scored, however.
Regan Smith has finished consistently in the 30s in three short track races this year. His best result was also his most recent one when he finished 32nd at Richmond International Raceway.
Besides driving his regular No. 7 Chevrolet SS in Saturday night's Sprint Cup Series race at Bristol, Regan Smith will take his turn in the JR Motorsports' No. 88 Dale's Pale Ale Camaro for Friday night's XFINITY Series (NXS) Food City 300.
Regan Smith fell 13 laps off the pace at Watkins Glen International last week and provided a little breathing room for Chris Buescher. Smith sits 32nd in the points standings and was nine markers behind Buescher—who is trying to make up ground on David Ragan in 30th—before the Cheez-it 355. Smith is now 14 points out of 31st with an average finish this season of 28.5.
Regan Smith finished third in the Pennsylvania 400, which ties his second-best career finish. He won the 2011 Southern 500 and finished third that same year in the Brickyard 400.
Regan Smith missed three years at Pocono Raceway, but he returned to the track this spring and finished just outside of the midline mark in 22nd.
Regan Smith could be a dark horse contender to finish in the top 25 at Kentucky Speedway in the Quaker State 400 by Advance Auto Parts. He has two such finishes on similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks in 2016 with a best of 23rd at Kansas Speedway.
Regan Smith began the season on a high note with an eighth-place finish in the Daytona 500, but four more top-25s and a couple of 28th-place results have made him worthy of starting when he fits a salary cap plan. One has to guess correctly about when to start him, however.
Regan Smith got the 2016 season off to a strong start with an eighth-place finish in the Daytona 500, but that race plays by its own rules. In the 10 unrestricted, intermediate speedway races this season, he has scored three top-25s, however, and made a reasonable fill-in pick.
Regan Smith has not had a lot of success on similarly-configured, 1.5-mile tracks this year, but his last two efforts have an asterisk. He sustained crash damage at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway this spring to finish 25th and 31st.
Tommy Baldwin Racing's No. 7 Chevrolet will pay tribute to 1992 NASCAR Cup champion Alan Kulwicki during Darlington Raceway's throwback weekend in September.
JR Motorsports (JRM) and Dale’s Pale Ale, the first craft beer to be featured in a can, have announced a multi-year extension that will see the brand sponsor JRM’s No. 88 Chevrolet in three NASCAR XFINITY Series (NXS) races in 2016-17.
In his first two races this season, Regan Smith experienced his best finish of the year with an eighth in the Daytona 500 and his worst of 34th at Atlanta Motor Speedway. His last three attempts have all ended in the 20s.