Garrett Smithley is a 2010 graduate of McIntosh High School, Peachtree City, Ga. He participated in the Drama and Choral Departments, International Thespian Society, Drama Club, German Club, Fellowship of Christian Students, and the Boy Scouts of America.
He began his racing career in October of 2007, driving a Bandolero with the Legends of Georgia. He finished his first year in the top ten in the Young guns Division and won 2008 Thursday Thunder Bandolero “Rookie of the Year”. After moving up to the Outlaw Division, Garrett captured four Championships in two years, won the INEX points title for Georgia, was Fourth in INEX National points and placed Third at Bandolero Nationals in the Outlaw Division.
March of 2010 marked his debut in a Legend car. Garrett competed in two simultaneous series during the summer racing season as a Semi-pro; Thursday Thunder at The Atlanta Motor Speedway and The Georgia Grand at Lanier National Speedway. He finished in fifth place at AMS in the Thursday Thunder Championship after leading the points for three weeks and also posted a top five in the Georgia Grand. He took his Legend car to Victory Lane for the first time at Lanier in June. In October, Garrett competed in the Legends Nationals at Langley Speedway and finished sixth place in The Race of Champions. Garrett continued his winning streak by taking feature races at Watermelon Capitol Speedway, Lanier and AMS.
In September, Garrett was one of twelve racers internationally selected to participate in Richard Petty’s Drivers Search II. Over four days of instruction and competition, his driving abilities were tested on a variety of tracks including the road course at Carolina Motorsports Park and the mile and a half at Charlotte Motor Speedway. He drove a USAC Midget (posting the fastest lap time of the day), high speed Go-Kart, Dodge Viper, Nationwide Stock Car and a Sprint Cup COT Stock Car (ran a 32.25 second lap at CMS.) The intensive training also included interview skills, a mock press conference and culminated in filming a commercial with ESPN’s Jamie Little. Other professionals contributing their expertise included: Marcos Ambrose, Ken Shrader, Frank Kimmel, Kyle Petty, “Miss Sprint Cup”-Monica Palumbo, Dale Inman and even the King of NASCAR, Richard Petty.
Garrett won the first three races of the Winter Flurry Series at the Atlanta Motor Speedway, two road course races and one quarter mile race and finished the series with the Semi-Pro Championship. Garrett has moved to North Carolina to further his racing career and has competed in several races. Starts at Concord Speedway, Hickory Motor Speedway, and Caraway Motor Speedway have all resulted in top five finishes with two second place finishes at Concord and 2 wins at Caraway, as well as, a win at Kentucky Motor Speedway. He recently competed in the Summer Shootout Series at Charlotte Motor Speedway with 4 top 10s, 1 top 5, and one pole award. He started 2012 with a bang winning the Annual Ice Cold Shriners Bowl race in the Legends Semi-pro division. He has since Competed in Atlanta Motor Speedway’s Thursday Thunder series finishing in the top 5 all 10 races with 1 win and finishing 2nd in the championship. He finished 7th in Legends Nationals in Late October and ended up 4th in North Carolina State points, as well as 24th in INEX National Points out of 500 plus drivers.
In December of 2012, Garrett had the opportunity to test in the ARCA Racing series at Daytona International Speedway with Brian Keselowski Motorsports. He posted the 5th fastest time out of 44 drivers on the first day in his very first time on the track. While continuing further his racing career, Garrett is now employed with the Richard Petty Driving Experience. He is a driving instructor for independent client drivers, as well as a ride driver giving 3 lap thrill rides to the public.