Skip to content
Sammy Smith wins the General Tire Pole Award at 5 Flags Speedway
Sammy Smith, driver of the No. 18 Engine Ice Toyota, wins the General Tires Pole Award for the Pensacola 200 Presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions for the ARCA Menards Series East in Pensacola, Florida, on Feb. 27, 2021. (Morgan Givens/ARCA Racing)

QUALIFYING: Sammy Smith Takes General Tire Pole At 5 Flags On Last Practice Lap

PENSACOLA, Fla. — What originally was scheduled as a two-lap single car qualifying session ahead of Saturday’s Pensacola 200 Presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions instead became a 30-minute open session when practice was delayed by rain and combined with qualifying.

Sammy Smith took advantage with the last of the 27 laps he ran Saturday afternoon in practice/qualifying.

Smith’s best lap time of 17.493 seconds / 102.898 mph earned him the General Tire Pole Award for the evening’s 200-lap race at the half-mile 5 Flags Speedway, the second event of the 2021 ARCA Menards Series East season.

Smith, the 16-year-old rookie from Johnston, Iowa, who’s driving the No. 18 Engine Ice Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing in the East Series this season, picked up his first General Tire Pole Award for just his second series start.

RELATED: Complete Qualifying Results

Taylor Gray will roll off second Saturday evening after posting a lap of 17.547 seconds / 102.582 mph in the afternoon session. Rajah Caruth (17.630 seconds / 102.099 mph) qualified third, followed by Daniel Dye (17.719 seconds / 101.586 mph) in fourth and Mason Diaz (17.778 seconds / 101.249 mph) in fifth.

Joey Iest, Gray’s DGR teammate, qualified sixth. Max Gutiérrez, who’s coming off an epic win in the series opener almost three weeks ago at Florida’s New Smyrna Speedway, qualified seventh.

Carson Kvapil, Parker Retzlaff and Stephanie Moyer rounded out the top 10 in qualifying.

The Pensacola 200 Presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions is scheduled to start at 5 p.m. CT / 6 p.m. ET on Saturday. The race will stream live on TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold. Live race audio is available on ARCARacing.com.

A delayed broadcast of Saturday’s race is scheduled to air Thursday, March 4, at 11 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

Qualifying results/starting lineup for Pensacola 200 Presented by Inspectra Thermal Solutions

Pos. Car No. Driver Sponsor Best time Best speed In lap Laps Diff.
1 18 Sammy Smith * EngineIce Toyota 17.493 102.898 27 27  –
2 17 Taylor Gray Ford Performance Ford 17.547 102.582 3 37 0.054
3 6 Rajah Caruth * UTI/NTI Chevrolet 17.63 102.099 19 19 0.137
4 43 Daniel Dye * Halifax Health Race to Stop Suicide Chevrolet 17.719 101.586 19 21 0.226
5 74 Mason Diaz Solid Rock Carriers/Prince William Marina Toyota 17.778 101.249 9 23 0.285
6 54 Joey Iest * David Gilliland Racing Ford 17.822 100.999 23 26 0.329
7 30 Max Gutierrez * ToughBuilt Ford 17.916 100.469 20 22 0.423
8 41 Carson Kvapil * Chevrolet Parts Chevrolet 17.955 100.251 7 24 0.462
9 42 Parker Retzlaff Ponsse/Strike Force Toyota 17.996 100.022 4 25 0.503
10 12 Stephanie Moyer * Council Cup Campground Toyota 19.23 93.604 14 18 1.737
11 10 Dick Doheny Fast Track Racing Toyota 20.255 88.867 6 6 2.762
12 11 Richard Garvie * Stretchlab Ford 20.941 85.956 3 5 3.448
13 6 Wayne Peterson GreatRailing.com Chevrolet 29.177 61.692 1 1 11.684