Chandler Smith cruises to Alsco Uniforms 300 pole

Ahead of Saturday’s Alsco Uniforms 300 NASCAR showdown, Chandler Smith picked up right where AJ Allmendinger left off last season. In qualifying Friday, Smith drove Kaulig Racing’s No. 16 machine to the pole – a feat Allmendinger accomplished in both Xfinity Series races last season – to earn the first Xfinity Series pole of his career.

“Having the confidence to stay wide open during qualifying, that’s where truck racing comes in handy,” said Smith, who will make his sixth Xfinity Series start on Saturday. “I feel like this is what a race car really is. I love Kaulig Racing. I’m really happy where I’m at. I want to set my roots here.”

The 20-year-old rookie will start alongside Justin Allgaier, with Cole Custer, Brett Moffitt and Josh Berry rounding out the Top 5.

Las Vegas’ Kyle Busch, who is attempting to race in all three NASCAR races this weekend, qualified 11th, after issues in practice limited the veteran driver to just four laps.

“It gave us a really good read on where we’re at,” Busch said. “There’s just not enjoy adjustments allowed on pit road that I would like to do. I guess I should have looked at the setup sheet before we came. All good though. We’ll battle it out tomorrow.”