RELATED: Race results " Updated NXS standings DOVER, Del. -- Regan Smith charged from fourth to first during a restart on Lap 121 and stayed there for the rest of the Hisense 200 NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Dover International Speedway Saturday, posting his second victory of the season and working his way back into championship contention. After a 31-minute rain delay, Smith passed Kyle Busch , Denny Hamlin and leader Elliott Sadler on the restart on Lap 121 of 200, staved off intense pressure from Hamlin midway through the final green-flag run and pulled away as the Joe Gibbs Racing teammates battled for second place. Without a concrete deal in place for next season, Smith won for the first time at the Monster Mile -- in fact, the 80 laps he led were the first circuits he had ever spent out front at Dover. The victory was the sixth of Smith's career, and all of them have come under the JR Motorsports banner. RELATED: Dillon has tire failure as caution waves Hamlin won the fight for the runner-up spot, crossing the finish line .703 seconds behind Smith . Busch led a race-high 110 laps and came home third, followed by Ryan Blaney and Kyle Larson . Austin Dillon ran sixth, one spot ahead of Chase Elliott , who moved into second place in the series standings, 24 points behind leader Chris Buescher , who finished eighth on Saturday. Smith , who rallied from a flat tire in the first third of the race, took over third in points, 36 behind Buescher. "I knew the car was fast, but I didn't know it was that fast until we got out in clean air," Smith said in Victory Lane. "This wasn't a Hail Mary. We came from the back to the front and just had a fast race car. "If we can keep doing that every week, and get another win or two here or there, I don't know what's going to happen. I'm trying to figure out some things for next year, so wins never hurt -- that's never a bad thing going forward." A victory for Smith was not even a remote consideration when a light rain began falling shortly after the halfway point, with the race already under caution for a wreck involving Stanton Barrett and Cale Conley on Lap 106. Sadler, whose 2016 move to JR Motorsports was announced on Friday, took two new tires under the yellow and was first off pit road, leading the race and praying for a monsoon. But the rain abated, depriving Sadler of a going-away present to Roush Fenway Racing , the organization he will leave at season's end. "I've never had much luck with the rain," Sadler said ruefully. "I've always been on the wrong side of that, going back to the 2009 Daytona 500 (where Sadler was fifth with a chance to win when the race was called because of rain after 152 laps)." Note: Ty Dillon cut a tire and hit the outside wall on Lap 24, resulting in a 28th-place finish. He slipped from second to fourth in the series standings, 39 points back of Buescher.
Regan Smith talks with NASCAR.com’s Jonathan Merryman in Victory Lane at Dover International Speedway about getting back in contention in the NASCAR XFINITY Series Championship.
Regan Smith saves enough fuel to hold of a charging Denny Hamlin and Kyle Busch and claim his first victory at Dover International Speedway.
Regan Smith , who is trying to get back into the championship battle, celebrates a key victory at Dover International Speedway.
Regan Smith stretches his fuel mileage to beat Joe Gibbs Racing and the rest of the field and earn his second victory of the season.
RELATED: See how Smith won at Mid-Ohio ELKHART LAKE, Wis. -- Regan Smith used a bit of bumper two weeks ago to become NASCAR's most recent road-course winner, shoving road-racing veteran Alex Tagliani in the last lap at Mid-Ohio to take his first XFINITY Series victory of the year. With the final road-course race of the season looming at Road America , Smith said he doesn't have regrets about the late-race contact, which left Tagliani steaming with cross post-race words. "I think if you're in that same situation, you've got to do what you can do to go for wins," Smith said before opening XFINITY practice Friday at the 4.048-mile circuit. "I guess in that circumstance in that situation, I didn't wreck him, just had a little bumper tag there and we came out as the beneficiary of it. I have not spoken to Alex and didn't really figure he'd be in the mood right after the race to talk at all, so I think possibly down the road, we will. He's somebody that I've raced with a few times now and enjoy racing with him. I think he would understand the scenario of going for wins and doing what we've got to do there. "It's a fine line. There's wrecking a guy and there's moving him and getting the position. We see the moving all the time. It's not anything new. It's been done in our sport for a thousand times and a thousand more times in the future, I'm sure. The feedback I got from drivers, crew members, you name it, they thought it was a good move and they thought it was fine. I didn't really hear too much negative about it." Smith's victory helped bolster the JR Motorsports driver's case for a series championship. Though he ranks fourth -- 51 points behind series leader Chris Buescher -- he noted that plenty can change with 11 races remaining on the calendar. "I think we're still in it," Smith said. "We're racing like we're still in it, and the mindset is to go out and do everything we can to lead laps and win races. And if you're doing that, you close up on points even quicker than you can imagine." While the title fight for this season has ramped up, Smith has also kept a focus on making his 2016 plans final. His recent remarks about his potential free-agent status have sparked interest into what next season might hold, plus in which series he'll be competing. Smith reiterated his goal of returning to the Sprint Cup Series, where he's performed admirably in fill-in roles the last two seasons -- including three races this year in place of the suspended Kurt Busch and one race after Kyle Larson 's fainting spell on the eve of the first Martinsville race of 2015. "Working hard every day to figure out 2016," Smith said. "I think I've been clear for the better part of two and a half years now that I want to get back to Sprint Cup and do that at some point, so I'm fortunate to be in fast race race cars at JR Motorsports right now and have an amazing opportunity here and definitely don't take that for granted. At the same time, I want to give myself that opportunity to get back to the other series. As soon as all that stuff plays out and I have answers, then I'll given them as soon as I can."
Practice 2: Practice results After posting the fourth-fastest speed in the opening session, Sprint Cup Series regular Kasey Kahne soared all the way to the top in Thursday's final XFINITY Series practice at Charlotte Motor Speedway . Piloting the No. 88 Chevrolet for JR Motorsports this weekend, Kahne laid down a fast lap of 180.433 mph to score the top spot. Fellow Cup regular and leader of the opening session, Kyle Busch was second on the leaderboard, propelling his No. 54 Joe Gibbs Racing ride at 180.114 mph around the North Carolina track. Points leader Chris Buescher -- who was runner-up in the first practice -- maintained his momentum during the second session, posting the third-fastest speed of 180.108 mph in his No. 60 Roush Fenway Racing Ford. JR Motorsports' Regan Smith (180.096 mph) and Kyle Busch Motorsports' Erik Jones (180.066 mph) rounded out the top five. The XFINITY Series is back on track at Charlotte on Friday at 4:45 p.m. ET for Coors Light Pole Qualifying (NBCSN/Live Extra). Practice 1: Practice results Kyle Busch topped the leaderboard early during Thursday's opening XFINITY Series practice at Charlotte Motor Speedway , wheeling his No. 54 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota at 181.886 mph. Current series points leader Chris Buescher ranked second on the charts, rounding the 1.5-mile oval at 181.330 mph in his No. 60 Roush Fenway Racing Ford. Richard Childress Racing 's Ty Dillon posted the third-fastest speed in his No. 3 ride (181.318 mph), while Kasey Kahne -- who is piloting the No. 88 ride for JR Motorsports this weekend -- was fourth with a top pace of 181.020 mph. Ryan Reed rounded out the top five with a fast lap of 180.499 mph in his No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing ride. Reigning series champion Chase Elliott was 12th-fastest in the field, propelling his No. 9 JR Motorsports Chevrolet at 179.295 mph
RELATED: Smith , Dillon get physical post-race Regan Smith shared his view of the post-race fracas with Ty Dillon at Watkins Glen International last week, and he made no apologies for his actions. "I was pretty fired up after the race, and I feel like rightfully so," Smith said on "JR Motorsports Up Front" on Dirty Mo Radio. "That's the passion of our sport, that's why we do it. We don't do it because we go there to be all happy-go-lucky. We do it because we want to go out there and race hard and win. When you feel like you've been wronged, then sometimes you've got to handle it." Last Saturday following the Zippo 200, Smith stopped at competitor Ty Dillon's car, leaned in and grabbed Dillon by the front of his uniform, confronting him about an incident between the two in Turn 1 on a Lap 40 restart. The two NASCAR XFINITY Series championship contenders pushed and shoved and shouted angrily at each other, promising retaliation down the road before NASCAR officials and various team members stepped in to separate them. Smith eventually was pulled away and made his way back to the garage area still fuming. The JR Motorsports driver offered some insight into his history with Dillon and the on-track incident that sparked his ire. "I think from my perspective I've been on the receiving end on more than one occasion from that car," he said. "And that's the frustrating part and that's the part that really builds. I think this year for the most part we have done a good job of racing each other hard, racing each other clean and kind of had an understanding of how we were going to run each other. I didn't take very nicely to the move that was made on Saturday. "I feel like and I don't mean to say this arrogantly, but there are certain guys in our series that are very good at braking and in braking zones … If you outbrake them, it probably means you have missed the corner, whether its a restart or whatever. For me to get in any deeper in that corner, I would have wadded the 22 ( Brad Keselowski ) up and wrecked him and the 33 ( Paul Menard ) likely. I don't race that way. ... On a road course, I feel like probably most of us, or the majority of the field has enough experience to understand that and realize that." RELATED: Dillon gets an interesting gift from Virginia Tech coach The turn of events was even more frustrating for Smith because it was an example of yet another good run at a road course turned bad for circumstances out of his control. "If you look back at my two-and-a-half-years here, we have run top five at every road course, and run strong enough to ... potentially win all of them," he said. "That's the most frustrating for me. We've got nothing to show from any of them. And it's not by our own hand of making mistakes on our own. "It's been of other things and other people just doing boneheaded stuff that makes absolutely no sense to you. We could be sitting here talking about almost 10 straight top fives on a road course instead of 'Wow, Regan never finishes good at a road course.' That's not the case. We are always up there, in the hunt and maybe that, sometimes that can be the curse. A lot of times you look at the top fives when these races are over and its guys that didn't run near the top five all day long and that's just how these things shape out sometimes." Heading into Mid-Ohio for the Nationwide Children's Hospital 200 (Saturday, 3:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN, MRN, SiriusXM) Smith is fourth in the points standings, 57 points behind championship leader Chris Buescher . Dillon is tied with Smith's JRM teammate and defending series champion, Chase Elliott for second place in the standings. Smith says he thinks that circumstances will put he and Dillon together a bit this weekend. RELATED: Latest series standings "You can pretty much guarantee that we will qualify next to each other, ride on the same pack truck prior to the race. That's how it works in NASCAR." And while Smith says he has not watched the incident, he is confident someone at JRM will make sure he sees it at some point. "I haven't watched it, nor will I," Smith later jokingly added, "I'm sure I'll be forced to watch it at the Christmas party or at some point. I know I am not going to be able to get away from it."
Smith , Sadler, Blaney and Suarez advance to Dash 4 Cash at Bristol SPEEDWAY, Ind. -- Regan Smith 's eighth place finish in Saturday's Lilly Diabetes 250 XFINITY Series at Indianapolis Motor Speedway wasn't the victory he'd hoped for, but Smith and his JR Motorsports team was still able to celebrate having gotten one step closer to winning a million dollars in the series' Dash 4 Cash incentive program. While race winner Kyle Busch was hoisting trophies nearby in victory lane, Smith accepted a check for $100,000 as the second round winner of the Dash4Cash program. He also collected $100,000 on May 30, after winning the first round at Dover, Delaware. Any driver who wins the first three Dash 4 Cash awards then wins the final round race outright -- Sept. 5 at Darlington -- would total $1 million for the effort. Smith bettered championship leader Chris Buescher , Chase Elliott and Brendan Gaughan to claim Saturday's portion of the winnings. Smith , along with Indianapolis' runner-up Ryan Blaney , third place finisher Daniel Suarez and fifth place finisher Elliott Sadler now advance and are eligible for the third round of competition Aug. 21 at Bristol Motor Speedway. "We had three battles we were fighting today,'' Smith said standing alongside his No. 7 AmericasPower.org Chevy covered in pretend dollar bills. "First and foremost we wanted to win the race and we weren't capable of doing that today. We knew that so then we wanted to win the money and gain points on the 60-car and we did both of those things today and that's what we've got to keep doing every week. "I know as a company we're working hard to get going further forward. "I thought we could have been anywhere from 6th to 10th . We'll take that and we're going to bust our ass the rest of the year." Smith , last year's championship runner-up sits fourth in the rankings entering next week's XFINITY Series race at Iowa Speedway. He trails Buescher by 51 points. In the meantime, Smith joked that he already had an idea how to spend at least a portion of his now $200,000 Dash 4 Cash effort. "I'd like to buy a cool box, I'm really hot right now," he joked with a big smile. FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
RELATED: Smith seals the deal at Mid-Ohio Regan Smith defined what it meant to pull a 180 at Mid-Ohio last Saturday. One week after nearly coming to blows with Ty Dillon on pit road at Watkins Glen, Smith found himself smiling and pumping his fist triumphantly in Victory Lane. "This is an incredible feeling, just an awesome feeling," Smith exclaimed after winning for the first time in 52 starts. On Friday, Smith will try to celebrate for the second consecutive week by winning the Food City 300 NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway (7:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN). "Once you do it (win a race) once, you want to do that every week," Smith said. "That moment when you pull up to the pit wall and do a burnout with your guys standing there, who put so much time and effort into everything that you get to go out there and showcase, there's no moment like that, nothing that compares to that, no feeling or sensation." Currently fourth in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series standings, Smith trails his JR Motorsports teammate Chase Elliott (+26 points), Ty Dillon (+27) and Chris Buescher (+51) for the lead. Bristol is a prime place for Smith to gain ground on his young adversaries. He has made as many starts (11) at the .533-mile track as Elliott, Dillon and Buescher have combined. RELATED: Series standings Also on the line for Smith is the $100,000 NASCAR XFINITY Series Dash 4 Cash bonus. To earn the extra money Smith must finish ahead of Daniel Suárez, Ryan Blaney and Elliott Sadler . He grabbed the first two Dash 4 Cash $100,000 bonuses at Dover and Indianapolis, so if Smith earns the bonus this weekend, he can win $1 million through the Dash 4 Cash program by winning the XFINITY race at Darlington on Labor Day weekend. RELATED: Smith wins second round of Dash 4 Cash, $100,000 "We want to win this weekend, for sure, with the XFINITY Dash 4 Cash on the line, and there’s no better place for it than Bristol," Smith said. "We're looking forward to it."