Photo: Chris Owens/ASP, Inc.

Regan Smith to Continue Filling in for Kasey Kahne at Dover

By Luis Torres, Staff Writer

Despite doing a test run at Charlotte Motor Speedway Tuesday, Leavine Family Racing announced Wednesday that Kasey Kahne isn’t cleared to compete in Sunday’s Gander Outdoors 400 at Dover International Speedway in Delaware.

Like the past four races, Regan Smith will continue to fill in behind the wheel of the No. 95 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 as Kahne is still recovering from extreme heat exhaustion diagnosed after the Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Sept. 2.

Kahne did a two-hour private medical test session at the 1.5-mile oval, as part of an evaluation to see if the 15-year veteran is ready to return, and finish off his NASCAR career as a full-time competitor.

Since filling in for Kahne at Indianapolis, Smith has finished inside the top-20 in three out of the four races, two of which were inside the top-15. Notably, leading LFR to non-restrictor plate season-high 12th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. This past Sunday in the Bank of America ROVAL 400 at Charlotte, he finished on the lead lap in 15th.

Heading into the ‘Monster Mile,’ Smith looks to bounce back from a 34th place retirement at the ‘Monster Mile’ last June, when he filled in for the injured Aric Almirola.

In 13 previous starts, Dover hasn’t treated the former Southern 500 winner kindly, with two 17th place efforts in both Fall 2011 and 2012 being his best runs.

LFR will provide an additional update on Kahne’s condition following the Dover weekend.

Since LFR’s last update Sept. 11, Kahne stirred some buzz in the Verizon IndyCar Series paddock as he was seen at the Ed Carpenter Racing pit box at Sonoma Raceway Sept. 15.

However, Kahne denied interests of competing in the sport as he was visiting Carpenter, and his sprint car team was competing at Calistoga Speedway, just over an hour from Sonoma.

Prior to the announcement, Kahne and Jamie McMurray were at Martinsville Speedway Wednesday, partaking an annual event hosted by Chevrolet where breast cancer survivors painted the curbs in pink to raise awareness American Cancer Society’s “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer” campaign.

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From the Pacific Northwest, Luis is a University of Idaho graduate with a Bachelor's degree in Broadcasting and Digital Media. Ever since watching the 2003 Daytona 500, being involved in auto racing is all he's ever dreamed of doing. He's also covered Idaho Athletics and high school football as both a writer and videographer. Additionally, he spent 2017 writing several racing columns as an independent journalist. Luis does video and photography, and is a fan of Seattle sports, a music critic and a motivator who wants to impact people's lives.