NASCAR CRAFTSMAN Truck Series champion Zane Smith couldn’t have asked for a better start to his title defense.
For the second straight year, Smith won the season opener at Daytona. The driver of the No. 38 Front Row Motorsports Ford finished second at Las Vegas—to Truck Series career victory leader Kyle Busch, no less—to claim the series lead.
Now Smith comes to a track where his drafting skills should stand him in good stead in Saturday’s Fr8 208 (2 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).
Smith, however, will have to beat defending race winner Corey Heim and TRICON Garage Toyota teammate John Hunter Nemechek, who is running both Saturday races.
Take it with a grain of salt, given the recent changes to the track, but Toyota drivers have won five of the last six Atlanta races, including last year’s on the repaved surface.
The exception to the recent Toyota dominance is Grant Enfinger, who won in a Ford in 2020—the only time a Ford driver has triumphed in 21 Truck Series races at Atlanta. Enfinger is behind the wheel of the No. 23 GMS Racing Chevrolet this year.
“Atlanta is a lot different since the reconfiguration,” Enfinger said. “It races more like a superspeedway, rather than a conventional mile-and-a-half track. With the banking and newer asphalt, we will all have a lot of grip, which provides for tight racing. We will have to be aggressive on the track and pit road to position ourselves to be up front for the end.”
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!