Nemechek Fights Back at Kansas
After two finishes outside the top-25 at Atlanta and Martinsville, a third place Friday night at Kansas comes as a step in the right direction for John Hunter Nemechek.
Starting the day in 14th, the 19-year-old worked his way to the front to finish fourth in Stage 1, and seventh in Stage 2.
“It started out pretty good,” Nemechek said. “We didn’t qualify like we wanted to. We ended up qualifying 14th and I think it was Lap 5, we were running sixth or fifth there and we had made it up to the front pretty good. We struggled all night fighting tight conditions center off, and my guys never gave up on me so, I can’t thank them enough,”
“We made good adjustments all night, and we went a little bit further at the end and needed just a little bit more I think to hang with the 51 (Busch). The 27 (Rhodes) and the 51 were so fast at the end it was hard to keep up,” Nemechek said. “After the last couple of races that we’ve had, having two mechanical failures, to come back and get a third, definitely is great for our team and hopefully we can keep that momentum rolling.”
Despite the solid run, Nemechek admits there is still a “little bit of work to do” for his team moving forward after mechanical failures in two of the first four races have put them behind. The second-generation racer also expressed that the team needs to work on their strategy prior to each race weekend. As with no top-10 starts yet this year, he has found himself playing catch up come time for the green flag.
“We have to keep finishing races and have to work on our speed a little bit,” Nemechek said. “We have to work on our unload speed. It makes it way easier when you unload fast and don’t have to change a bunch. I feel like that’s where were getting beat.”
After four events, he sits 11th in the standings, 16 points behind eighth heading into Charlotte, where he has a 12th place finish in one start.
Mitchell Breuer is a POPULAR SPEED Development Journalist
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