Neme’chek’ the Facts:
- John Hunter Nemechek and the No. 4 Berry’s Manufacturing team head to Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the opening race in the Round of 8 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series playoffs 44 points above the cutoff line for advancing to the Championship 4 at Phoenix (Ariz.) Raceway. Nemechek accumulated 49 playoff points in the regular season and added an additional playoff point during the Round of 10 with his stage win at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway.
- Nemechek was able to hold off KBM team owner Kyle Busch over the final seven laps earlier this season at Las Vegas to score his first victory of 2021. He led a race-high 94 laps of the 134-lap event. Overall, in seven Truck Series starts at the Nevada track, the 24-year-old driver has one win, two top-five and three top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 14.9. In the Xfinity Series, he has finished inside the top 10 in both of his starts, including a second-place finish in March of 2019. In Cup Series action, he has an average finish of 22.0 in his two starts at the 1.5-mile venue.
- The second-generation driver has put together a remarkable season thus far in his first season driving for Kyle Busch Motorsports (KBM). In addition to leading the circuit in race wins (five) and stage wins (10), he leads the Truck Series in top fives (11), top 10s (14), fastest laps run (270), driver rating (115.5), average running position (5.954) and average finish (7.3). Nemechek registered his fifth Truck Series win of 2021 June 26 at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa. The talented wheelman was able to beat KBM owner-driver Kyle Busch head-to-head for the third time this season. Nemechek also bested his boss at Las Vegas (Nev.) Motor Speedway in March and at Richmond (Va.) Raceway in April. Busch finished second to his pupil in all three of those events. Additionally, Nemechek has produced victories at Charlotte (N.C.) Motor Speedway and Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth.
- The Toyota Racing driver is competing in the Camping World Truck Series playoffs for the third time in his career. He finished eighth in the championship standings for his family-owned team, NEMCO Motorsports, in 2016 and 2017. He qualified for the NASCAR Xfinity Series playoffs in 2019 and finished the final standings in the seventh position.
- 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 this year with KBM.
- Eric Phillips returned to KBM to lead the No. 4 team this season. 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. His 42 career Truck Series victories make him the winningest crew chief in Truck Series history, with 32 of those coming while at KBM. At Las Vegas, Phillip’s drivers have collected two wins, two top-five and seven top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 11.4 across 10 starts. He won with Nemechek earlier this year and with Erik Jones in the fall of 2014.
- Long-time sponsor Berry’s Manufacturing will adorn the hood of Nemechek’s No. 4 Tundra at Las Vegas Friday. When you choose Berry’s Manufacturing, you are selecting a family-based business centered on exceptional quality, friendly customer service, and a product base that is proudly Made in the USA.
John Hunter Nemechek, Driver Q&A:
Does winning at Las Vegas earlier this year make you optimistic that you can do it again this weekend?
“For sure, playoff race, first race of the Round of 8, so we’re looking forward to going back to Las Vegas. We won there in the spring and had a really fast Toyota Tundra. Hopefully, we’ll have the same this weekend. There are a lot of great trucks. A lot of guys have stepped up their game and brought some really fast trucks to the race track the past couple weeks. Hopefully, we have our Toyota Tundra dialed in and we can get to victory lane and lock ourselves into that final four for Phoenix at the end of the year.”
Do the track conditions at Las Vegas stay consistent from the spring race to the fall race?
I really don’t think that Vegas stays that consistent. Yes, the weather is consistent, but at the same time I feel like it’s the end of summer, you do get hotter temps this time of year, the sun has been baking on the race track all summer long, compared to it being winter – even though it doesn’t get super cold out there. I definitely think that the conditions are going to be a little bit different. I feel like the fall race is a little bit different than the spring race. Hopefully, we went back to the right notebook and took some notes and made the right adjustments to our setup for Friday night.”
How will you approach the Round of 8?
“This round for us if we can go win Vegas and lock ourselves in, that would be amazing. Then, you don’t have to worry about the wildcard of Talladega and the cutoff race at Martinsville. All in all, if we can’t win Vegas, then we definitely want to point our way in and get a great starting position for Talladega and Martinsville. I feel with the playoff points that we have currently, we are in a pretty good position. We just have to go out there an execute and maximize stage points all day to maximize our end result.”
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 120 career starts in NASCAR’s third division, has compiled two poles, 1,135 laps led, 39 top-five and 64 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 12.3.
- Qualified for the Camping World Truck Series playoffs in each of his two full-time seasons, finishing eighth in the championship standings in both 2016 and 2017.
- 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, earned the Sunoco Rookie of the Race award four times and finished 23rd in the championship standings.
- Across 53 career XFINITY Series starts, has totaled one win (Kansas Speedway, 10/20/18), one pole, 225 laps led, 13 top-five and 31 top-10 finishes resulting in an average finish of 11.8.
John Hunter Nemechek’s No. 4 Berry’s Manufacturing Tundra:
KBM-56: The No. 4 Berry’s Manufacturing team will unload KBM-56 for Friday’s race at Las Vegas. Nemechek piloted this Tundra to his fifth victory of the season earlier this year at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa., in its lone start this season.
KBM-56 Performance Profile:
|Starts||Wins||Average Start||Average Finish||Laps Led|
KBM Notes of Interest:
- KBM holds the Camping World Truck Series records for most career wins (89) and most wins in a single season (14 in 2014). With his victory at Bristol Motor Speedway Chandler Smith became the 17th 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.