Sammy Smith scored the top-finish for Toyota in today’s NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Watkins Glen International when he crossed the finish line in the third position. Fellow Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota driver Ty Gibbs battled at the front of the field throughout the event, leading a total of 25 laps (of 82), but contact with William Byron during the final restart spun both drivers out and took away their chance for victory.
Toyota Racing Post-Race Recap
NASCAR Xfinity Series
Watkins Glen International
Race 22 of 33 – 200.9 miles, 82 laps
TOYOTA FINISHING POSITIONS
1st, Kyle Larson*
2nd, AJ Allmendinger*
3rd, SAMMY SMITH
4th, Noah Gragson*
5th, Kaz Grala*
15th, CONNOR MOSACK
20th, BRAD PEREZ
24th, BRANDON JONES
27th, TY GIBBS
SAMMY SMITH, No. 18 Pilot Flying J Toyota GR Supra, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 3rd
How was your race today and what all did you learn today in this race?
“I lerarned a lot. It was a good day overall. We had a good day as a team and I was able to capitalize. The last few races I didn’t feel like I was able to capitalize and I feel like I did a better job today. Looking forward to Daytona next week.”
What was your perspective of the final restart?
“I felt like it was a good opportunity and I felt like I did a good job pushing Ty (Gibbs) and then I’m not sure what happened between him and (William) Byron, but they got pushed wide and then I got pushed wide. Then I got put three wide in the esses and killed my momentum. Was in a bad spot going into the bus stop, but did a good job coming out of there and it was a good day.”
TY GIBBS, No. 54 Cub Cadet Toyota GR Supra, Joe Gibbs Racing
Finishing Position: 27th
What happened in the closing laps with William Byron that ultimately cost you a chance at the win?
“We had a good start and he (William Byron) kind of washed up a little bit, but we had a good start. I stayed side-by-side with him and I felt like I had a good side draft going with him heading into the bus stop to where it helped me get position. And I remember coming to I think, however many laps to go so I feel like if I just let him by, it was game over. I had good position, I just didn’t put myself in a good spot on the curbs and and it just got me loose, I washed up into him and wrecked us both. It was my fault, but I was going for the win. I didn’t just want to pull over and let him go. Sorry to the 17 guys and to William. We put on a great show and I feel like he raced me well and I raced him well until I wrecked him. It was a good battle.”
What was the conversation like with William Byron following the race?
“He (William Byron) just came up to me and asked me where I was going. I told him my side. I feel like he told me his side. I feel like I got pinched up on the curb so hard. I feel like the bus stop is not made for two cars to go through at the same time. I was going for the win and it was my fault.”
Do you feel like you made a mistake?
“I mean, it’s racing. I want to put a show on and I don’t want to wreck everybody, but I want to go for the win. That’s what I was going for. I went in there side-by-side and I went for it and it didn’t work out. Sometimes that happens.”
Toyota racing PR