- After a fourth-place finish at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway last Thursday, John Hunter Nemechek and the No. 4 Mobil 1 team return to action Saturday night for the second running of the Pinty’s Truck Race on Dirt at Bristol Motor Speedway. In last year’s inaugural event, Nemechek started on the pole before being relegated to a 39th-place finish after being caught up in a Stage Two incident.
- Through the first five races of the 2022 season, Nemechek currently sits fifth in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series standings, 44-points behind ThorSport Racing driver Ben Rhodes in first. Nemechek leads the NASCAR Tuck Series regulars with 85 laps led and is in a three way tie with Ben Rhodes and Zane Smith for most stage wins (three) this season. After finishing 20th or worse in the first three events of the season, the second-generation has responded with top-five finishes in each of the last two events.
- The 24-year-old driver will be making his eighth career start on a dirt track in Camping World Truck series action. Nemechek has previously made five starts at Eldora (Ohio) Speedway, and one start each at Knoxville (Iowa) and Bristol Dirt. In his first seven starts, he has tallied 12 laps led, one top-five and four top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 14.1. His best result on dirt was a fifth-place finish at Eldora in 2017.
- The Toyota Racing driver has been preparing for the Bristol Dirt race by testing a Midget and Micro Sprint at Millbridge Speedway, a 1/6-mile dirt track in Salisbury, N.C. Nemechek is scheduled to make his first Micro Sprint start this Wednesday night at Millbridge.
- The world’s leading synthetic motor oil, Mobil 1, will return as the primary sponsor of the No. 4 Tundra TRD Pro with a new look this weekend. The No. 4 Mobil 1 Tundra will be switching from a matte black look to a matte white finish with the Mobil 1 pegasus returning to the side of the truck. Mobil 1 will continue the new paint scheme throughout the remainder of the 2022 season.
- Nemechek is an 11-time winner in Camping World Truck Series action, winning at least one race each season from 2015 to 2018 for his family-owned team, NEMCO Motorsports, and returning to victory lane in 2021 with KBM. Across 129 career starts in NASCAR’s third division, he has compiled three poles, 1,266 laps led, 42 top-five and 68 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 12.7.
- Eric Phillips returned to lead the No. 4 team in 2022. His 41 career Truck Series victories make him the winningest crew chief in Truck Series history, with 32 of those coming while at KBM including five last year. Phillips led the No. 18 team at KBM in its debut season in 2010 and helped build the organization into one of the premier teams in all of NASCAR before departing at the end of the 2014 season. Under his guidance, the No. 18 team won eight races in its inaugural campaign and became the first team in Truck Series history to capture an owner’s championship in its first season of competition. In 2014, the Illinois native led the No. 51 team to an owner’s championship and his team’s 10 wins spearheaded KBM to a single-season Truck Series record of 14 wins. Phillip’s has been atop the box for just three NASCAR Truck Series starts on dirt. In those three starts, his driver’s have tallied one pole and 24 laps led for an average finish of 26.3.
Do you enjoy racing in the Truck Series on dirt?
“Yeah, it’s something different. Definitely something to adapt to. The trucks are heavy and don’t quite drive like a normal dirt car when you go to race on dirt so you have to drive them a little bit different but it’s been a fun experience, I feel like I’ve run decent on the dirt stuff so far. We had a decent showing at Bristol last year, had speed, but ended up getting taken out. Soo, hopefully that doesn’t happen this year and hopefully we can run up front and be a contender.”
How do you approach the Bristol Dirt race?
“I think if it was a non-points race, you could say ‘whatever happens, happens’ but with it being a points race and part of the year I definitely think you have to take it serious. You have to go there and show up and do the best that you can, try to get as many stage points as possible, possibly play a little bit of strategy depending on tire wear and how the track changes. This year it’s going to be a night race rather than a day race so that’ll change some things. Just have to take it serious and go there and do the best we can every single week.”
You’ve been testing at Millbridge Speedway, is that more practice for the Truck Series dirt races or something that you wanted to do for fun?
“It’s something that I have wanted to do for some time, being able to go and drive a Midget and now in a Micro, so a little bit of both. I’ve tested both once so far and actually have a Micro race this week that I’m going to go run, but it’s something that I’ve been wanting to do for a long time. Christopher Bell and I have talked quite a bit about it, and (Kyle) Larson as well. They have been pushing me to get in one at some point and thankful for Toyota and TRD to let me hop behind the wheel of theirs and go enjoy some laps and hopefully that’ll get me better prepped for the dirt weekend this race at Bristol.”
John Hunter Nemechek Career Highlights:
- Eleven-time winner in Camping World Truck Series action, winning at least one race each season from 2015 to 2018 for his family-owned team, NEMCO Motorsports. Across 129 career starts in NASCAR’s third division, has compiled three poles, 1,266 laps led, 42 top-five and 68 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 12.7. Registered a career-high and series-leading five victories in 2021 and earned the NCWTS Regular Season championship and third in the final standings after qualifying for the Championship Four for the first time in his career.
- Produced three top-10 finishes and an average result of 22.4 while competing for rookie of the year honors in the NASCAR Cup Series in 2020. He recorded a career-best eighth-place finish twice, both coming at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway
- Across 59 career XFINITY Series starts, has totaled two wins, one pole, 510 laps led, 16 top-five and 35 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 11.5.
John Hunter Nemechek’s No. 4 Mobil 1 Tundra TRD Pro:
KBM-35: The No. 4 Mobil 1 team will unload KBM-35 for Saturday’s dirt race at Bristol. This Toyota has not raced since October of 2020. KBM-35 has one career win in 17 starts, coming with Danizel Suarez at Phoenix (Ariz.) Raceway in 2016.
KBM-35 Performance Profile:
|Starts||Wins||Average Start||Average Finish||Laps Led|
KBM Notes of Interest:
- KBM drivers have collected three wins, one pole, 478 laps led, eight top-five and 15 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 12.7 across 26 starts on dirt tracks.
- Martin Truex Jr. picked up the organization’s most recent victory on a dirt track in the inaugural Pinty’s Truck Race on Dirt at Bristol Motor Speedway (2021). Bubba Wallace (2014) and Christopher Bell (2015) have each picked up a win at Eldora Speedway.
- KBM holds the Camping World Truck Series records for most career wins (92) and most wins in a single season (14 in 2014). With his victory at Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 19, Corey Heim became the 18th different driver to win a Truck Series event for KBM. In addition to collecting a series-record seven Owner’s Championships, the organization has produced two championship-winning drivers: Erik Jones (2015) and Christopher Bell (2017).
- The No. 4 has 16 career victories at KBM and was the number for both of the organization’s driver championships.