John Hunter Nemchek finished fourth in an eventful NASCAR Camping World Truck Series playoff race at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway. Nemechek was able to run in the top-10 for a majority of the first two stages and pick up an additional five stage points.
Nemechek avoided three different accidents throughout the final stage and restarted overtime from the third position. As the field came through the tri-oval for the final time, Nemechek was in the lead before being turned and crossing the finish line sideways in the fourth position.
With just one race left in the Round of 8, Nemechek sits 36-points above the cutoff line to advance to the Championship 4.
Stage One Recap:
- John Hunter Nemechek started the Talladega 250 in the seventh position on the inside line based on NASCAR’s performance matrix system.
- With five laps remaining in the opening stage, Nemechek worked his way to the front and was running in the front row of the draft on the outside lane.
- Just three laps later, the inside lane had a big run, ultimately moving Nemechek back to seventh.
- As the green-and-white checkered came out at the end of Stage One, the second-generation driver was scored seventh, picking up an additional three stage points.
Stage Two Recap:
- After crew chief Eric Phillips called for a fuel only pit stop, the No. 4 Tundra gained six spots on pit road and restarted the second stage from the first position.
- Nemechek finished the middle stanza scored eighth, adding on two more stage points to his total.
Final Stage Recap:
- Nemechek restarted the final stage in the 13th-position behind Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM) teammate Drew Dollar.
- Ten laps into the final stage, Nemechek lost the draft and fell back to 23rd.
- With 37 laps to go, there was a 21-truck incident that Nemechek was able to avoid and jump up into the 11th-spot. He communicated with the No. 4 team that they “might’ve hit debris but should be good”.
- Nemechek brought the FAS/Pye-Barker Tundra down pit road for four fresh Goodyear tires and fuel with 34 laps remaining.
- The second-generation driver would restart in 13th on the inside lane and gain eight spots before the field came back to the stripe.
- Another incident occurred with 18 laps remaining that Nemechek was once again able to avoid by ducking below the yellow line.
- The field went back green with just 12 laps left in the Talladega 250 and the No. 4 Tundra in the fifth position.
- Nemechek once again lost the draft and fell back to 10th before there was another caution coming through the tri-oval with two to go.
- Nemechek lined up third for the overtime restart and had moved into first coming through the tri-oval before being turned around coming to the line.
- The No. 4 FAS/Pye-Barker Tundra went sliding across the start/finish line as Nemechek was credited a fourth place finish.
John Hunter Nemechek, driver of the No. 4 FAS/Pye-Barker Tundra for KBM
What happened on the final lap coming to the checkered flag?
“I had a run, got by the 38 (Todd Gilliland) and was trying to keep the 12 (Tate Fogleman) in the mirror. He had a huge run through the tri-oval. He faked high and I went to block high and then the block was a little too late I guess. I should have stayed up and probably still would have won the race. Overall, solid day for our Pye-Barker Fire & Safety Services Toyota Tundra. Us and the Toyota teammates worked very well together. We had a Toyota train going there at one time today. Solid points day for us – 35 above the cut line I think or something like that going into Martinsville. Just have to survive and advance to get to the final four.”
Are you upset with the 12 truck or is that just restrictor plate racing?
“That’s just how every race here for the past however many years has ended some way like that. It is what it is. I can’t be mad. As much as you want to be mad, you can’t be mad. It’s partly my fault. You take it with a grain of salt. I’m more mad at myself than anything for not staying higher to kind of stay away from him. It is what it is.”
Do you feel Matt Crafton was justified to be upset with the pushing in today’s race?
“I could push the 2 (Sheldon Creed), I could push the 99 (Ben Rhodes), I could push the 18 (Chandler Smith). I could push everyone but Matt (Crafton). I don’t know if he needs to tighten his truck up or what he needs to do. The last time he got loose, I didn’t even touch him, it was all air. Didn’t even touch his rear bumper. That, to me, is a free race truck and it doesn’t handle well when you’re in a group setting.”
Talladega 250 Recap
- Tate Fogleman picked up his first career NASCAR Camping World Truck Series victory at Talladega Superspeedway. Fogleman was followed by Tyler Hill, Todd Gilliland, John Hunter Nemechek, and Ryan Truex to round out the top-five.
- There were six cautions for 29 laps. There were 23 lead changes among 12 drivers, including Nemchek who led 11 laps.
How Nemechek’s KBM Teammates Fared:
- Chandler Smith, driver of the No. 18 Toyota, finished 19th.
- Drew Dollar, driver of the No. 51 Toyota, finished 35th.
Camping World Trucks Driver Championship Standings:
Nemechek has moved back into the top spot of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series driver championship standings following a fourth-place finish at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway. He currently sits 36-points above the cutoff line to advance to the Championship 4.
Nemechek and the No. 4 team will head to Martinsville (Va.) Speedway for the final race of the Round of 8 on Oct. 30. Live coverage will be on FS1, Motor Racing Network and SiriusXM at 1 p.m. ET.