Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Chris Buescher Tests Positive for COVID-19, Zane Smith Filling in at Gateway

Chris Buescher COVID RFK Racing Zane Smith Cup Debut
Chris Buescher will sit out this weekend’s NASCAR Cup Series race at WWT Raceway in Gateway due to COVID protocols. Zane Smith, a full-time NASCAR Camping World Truck Series competitor, will fill in for Buescher. Photo Credit: Left (RFK Racing), Right (James Gilbert/Getty Images)

Chris Buescher – driver of the No. 17 RFK Racing Ford Mustang — will not compete in Sunday’s Enjoy Illinois 300 at World Wide Technology Raceway, after testing positive for COVID-19.

Instead, Zane Smith – a three-time winner in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series this season for Front Row Motorsports — will drive the No. 17 in the Acronis Ford Mustang, marking his first career start at NASCAR’s top level.

At this time, Buescher is fully expecting to return to action for the NASCAR Cup Series’ next event at Sonoma Raceway.

Buescher, 29, sits 21st in the NASCAR Cup Series point standings and is 75 points outside the Playoff cutline with 12 races remaining until the Playoff field is set.

This past weekend in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway, Buescher was involved in a wild and spectacular crash, where he flipped four and a half times on the frontstretch. Buescher’s No. 17 car landed on it’s roof and the driver spent several minutes waiting for safety crews to flip the car over in order to extricate him.

Joseph Srigley
Joseph Srigley
University of Windsor | Business Administration - Supply Chain & Data Analytics Editor at

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