Originally written on Start 'N' Park Blog  |  Last updated 11/17/14
Dickies_500_qualifying_5a26

WATKINS GLEN, N.Y.  – Regan Smith capped off his homecoming weekend with a solid ninth-place finish in Sunday’s Sprint Cup road race at Watkins Glen International.

The result was Smith’s first career top-10 in eight starts on a road course and it was also his second straight top-10 of the season — he finished 9th at Pocono (Pa.) Raceway last weekend.

Smith, a native of Cato, N.Y. (75 miles north of Watkins Glen) was steady throughout the 90-lap race even though he had some issues with his No. 78 Furniture Row/Farm American Chevrolet on different parts of the 2.5-mile, seven-turn circuit.

“I am happy to come away with a top-10,” said Smith, who started the race from the 13th position. “We had to fight hard all day. I wasn’t overly happy with the car on a couple of spots on the track, and they were pretty crucial spots. Nonetheless, the guys worked hard in the pits with a strategy to get us up there. That’s the kind of thing you need to do when you’re not perfect on the track. In order for that to happen everyone has to pull together and work hard — and that’s exactly what we did.”

Smith dropped back to the mid 20s early in the race after making an unscheduled pit stop to repair damage to the grille. Once he returned to action, he charged to the front.

No doubt, the past three weekends have lifted the spirits and confidence levels for Smith and the Denver, Colo.-based Furniture Row Racing team.  Smith also had a top-10 car at Indianapolis three weeks ago, but damage to the front-end past the halfway mark of the race resulted in an 18th-place finish.

“I am very proud of this team and very excited about what we’ve been able to accomplish recently,” stated Smith. Todd (Berrier, crew chief) has been a great leader since his arrival three weeks ago. We are heading in the right direction. You need to get top-10s before you get top-fives, and top-fives will eventually turn into wins.”

Berrier, who joined Furniture Row Racing prior to the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis, was equally pleased with the overall team effort.

“Regan drove a strong race today and everyone pitched in to help us get the top-10,” noted Berrier. “We’re pleased with a pair of ninth-place finishes the past two weeks, but we want more, and it’s our goal to get better.”

Smith, who paid a visit Thursday evening to where he started his racing career — at the Syracuse Fairgrounds Microd Track — jumped one spot in the Sprint Cup driver point standings — from 24th to 23rd.

“Watkins Glen is my home track and it’s a nice feeling to come away with a solid performance with so many family, friends and fans in this area,” said Smith. “I am also real excited about going to Michigan next weekend. We had a great test there a few weeks ago.”

The race winner was Marcos Ambrose. Rounding out the top-10 in order were: Brad Keselowski, Jimmie Johnson, Clint Bowyer, Sam Hornish Jr., Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch, Matt Kenseth, Smith and Martin Truex Jr.

The race — Finger Lakes 355 at The Glen — had 10 lead changes among five drivers. There were four cautions for 13 laps.

The next Sprint Cup race is Sunday (Aug. 19) at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn.

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: No NFL team is moving to Los Angeles in 2015

Report: 49ers looking for young, offensive mind as next coach

Sheldon Richardson: I'm on the same level as JJ Watt

Kendrick Perkins: Rajon Rondo wanted out of Boston

Report: Jim Harbaugh being encouraged to take Michigan job

Three quarterbacks who could be traded this offseason

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Wolves trade Corey Brewer to the Rockets

Yankees trade Prado to Marlins for Eovaldi in 5-player deal

Brandon Browner fined $8K for throwing Brandon Gibson to turf

Report: Sharper, NFLers called spiked drinks 'horny juice'

Rex Ryan: My wife could coach Tom Brady

Jim Harbaugh won in laser tag by 'hunting' 10-year-old kid

Grizzlies players buy new car for team intern

Peyton Siva jokes that Rick Pitino is in the mob

WATCH: Montrezl Harrell ejected for throwing punch

UNC wearing Jordan-era throwback uniforms

Brian Kelly: Justin Brent gets 'distracted,' is in my doghouse

Five free agent signings that should happen in 2015

Reporter asks Rajon Rondo awkward question about trade

Video: Swaggy P elbows Steven Adams in throat, gets ejected

Video: Grizzlies buy car for assistant who had his stolen

Video: LeBron takes pass to the face from Dion Waiters

New video of Ray Rice incident emerges

President Obama calls James Franco “James Flacco”

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

No NFL team in LA next season?

UNC rocking Jordan-era throwbacks

Reporter asks Rondo awkward question

Three quarterbacks who could be traded this offseason

Jon Lester and the Cubs

Report: NFL players used 'horny juice'

Top 10 worst NBA related commercials of all-time

Phelps gets probation for DUI

NFL coaches on hot seat in Week 16

The Roy Williams-Terrell Owens horse collar turns 10

Most underpaid NFL players in 2014

Gronk jokes about Brady compliment

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.