For many drivers, the first experience at Daytona can be a learning experience. Such was the case for 20 year old Wildwood, MO native, Jesse Smith. Just past the one quarter mark in the ARCA Series season opener at Daytona International Speedway,...
For many drivers, the first experience at Daytona can be a learning experience. Such was the case for 20 year old Wildwood, MO native, Jesse Smith. Just past the one quarter mark in the ARCA Series season opener at Daytona International Speedway, Smith made hard contact with the turn four wall as the result of a tire failure after running in the lead pack for most of the event.
After posting strong practice speeds and qualifying 18th for the Lucas Oil Slick Mist 200, Smith was poised to be a contender in the 200 mile event. After the first caution, Smith's #29 Child's Tire, Hormel Foods Dodge began to overheat. The #29 team brought him down pit road numerous times to attempt to cool the engine. As the temperature began to decline, Smith's #29 developed a vibration under an ensuing caution flag.
Just a few laps after a restart, a right front tire failure put the Child's Tire, Hormel Foods Dodge into the turn four wall, ending Smith's first restrictor plate start prematurely on lap 24. Due to his third tire failure in the last two starts, Smith finished 32nd in the official results.
(On his first experience at Daytona): "It was great to compete at Daytona, but we just didn't have the luck to pull off a solid finish this weekend. It's just disappointing to have our last couple outings spoiled early. I felt like we had a racecar that could run up front and be in the mix at the end. I've got to thank Child's Tire and Hormel Foods for the opportunity to race at Daytona, and hopefully the next time we run in the ARCA Series we can have a much better result."