Murphy's Law Day for Chandler Smith in the Rattler

Snowball Derby winner suffers series of unfortunate events.


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The Rattler 250 was a Murphy’s Law kind of race for Chandler Smith.

The Snowball Derby winner, a week removed from his first NASCAR Truck Series victory of the season last weekend at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, started fifth on Sunday but it was downhill from there.

Racing for a spot inside the top-five on Lap 4, Smith suffered damage to the right front fender of his Donnie Wilson Motorsports No. 26 due to contact from above by Gabe Sommers. The contact resulted in a tire rub and dropped Smith from the lead lap.

The Dennis Dean led team were able to repair the damage on Lap 76 and got Smith back on the lead lap by Lap 160. Disaster struck again by Lap 185 when two cars crashed over the Turn 1 hill in front of him. Smith spun to avoid crashing into Eddie Van Meter.

His No. 26 came to a stop inside the Turn 1 wall where a push truck couldn’t get to his bumper. Smith lost five laps as track workers pushed the off the wall by hand. Smith finished the race 14th and five laps down.

It started with the incident with Sommers.

"I was all the way to the door number, and he came down really aggressive. Bent my right front in all the way to the tire and it just ended our day. It was pretty much killed. I talked to their guys after the race and they said the spotter cleared him and Gabe didn’t even know."

Sommers continued to race inside the top-five until falling out with a brake failure with less than 100 laps to go. Sommers was not available for comment immediately after the race.

Smith had just got back on the lead lap at the time he spun to avoid crashing into a crashing Van Meter.

"That caution was going to put us in contention because we were going to take our four tires and were going to be sitting really good," Smith said. "Lead lap, fresher tires than everyone else. I had to spin because there was no way to avoid them.

"I tried to fire it back up and it didn’t even turn over. I don’t think they realized quickly enough that I needed a push and by then I lost a lap or two. It sucks. I mostly hate it for my Donnie Wilson Motorsports guys. They gave me a really good car and I thought we were going to have a good shot at it this morning."