TOLEDO, Ohio (April 13, 2018) -- Zane Smith earned his career-first ARCA Racing Series presented by Menards victory last Saturday night at Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville in the No. 41 LaPaz Margarita Mix Toyota. The Huntington Beach, Calif. driver was no slouch in the Special Award categories either, taking the SCOTT Rookie of the Race honors, the Valvoline Lap Leader award (including Protect Plus Halfway Leader) and came out leading the Sioux Chief Short Track Challenge. Pretty good sweep for a day's work.
"We're obviously super-pumped for this year," said Smith. "For MDM Motorsports and really everyone on this team. I'm so luck to be working with some really good guys."
After a disappointing start at Daytona where Smith was involved in the late-race multi-car wreck going for the lead. Smith's rebound at Nashville puts him 4th overall in national championship standings headed to the Kentuckiana Ford Dealers 200 at Salem Speedway April 21-22.
"Daytona's always a crapshoot…you can only do so much. Nashville puts it back in the driver's hands and really gives everyone a more accurate glimpse of what we're going to see all year. I think we're going to be racing Sheldon (Creed) a lot this year."
Creed, also on the MDM roster, finished second after leading 12 laps with Harrison Burton coming home third, giving MDM the top three finishing positions.
"A lot of it is the cars," Smith continued. "MDM builds crazy-good cars. But even more than that…it's all the people here who really care and know what they're doing. There is just so much quality and effort in the MDM program…that's really what it is. There's not one bad guy in the shop. All good guys doing the right things. It's hard to beat that. Mardy (Lindley/crew chief) just got that thing right, and he hasn't even been to Nashville, not lately anyway. I can't wait to see what he can do when he goes back to a track he's more familiar with."
Smith's win and third-place qualifying effort also got Lindley the Cometic Crew Chief of the Race award at Nashville.
Fifteen-year-old Chandler Smith finished fifth in his ARCA debut at Nashville and also set a new one-lap track record, earning the General Tire Pole Award.
SPECIAL AWARD STANDINGS, after Nashville