NASCAR Xfinity Series
Josh Berry Taking Next Step in NASCAR Development
Mar 2, 2022
John Hunter Nemechek’s NASCAR Truck Series slogan with Kyle Busch Motorsports has been #Back4More but he might be tempted to return for more Super Late Model races under the right circumstances as well.
Over the weekend, his dad, Joe Nemechek won a Sportscar Vintage Racing Association Stock Car race in what looked like an old NEMCO Motorsports Late Model.
Close, but not quite.
"I believe it was one of my old K&N (Pro Series) cars that we used to go and test," the younger Nemechek said. "It was a road course car. I think he ended up putting it back together. He’s having a blast going and running some of those races with some guys and taking care of other people’s cars as well."
Front Row Joe has cut up several of their old Super Late Models and turned them into club racing cars but they still have a few remaining that are race ready. Their crew chief, Gere Kennon, is now with Donnie Wilson Motorsports but has been pushing both Nemecheks towards coming back to do some short trackin’.
It hasn’t fallen on deaf ears.
"I would definitely get back behind the wheel of a Super Late Model," Nemechek said. "I’m going to be doing some other racing this year outside the Truck and Xfinity stuff that will be announced at a later date. Looking forward to having some fun this year. The more time that I can spend behind the wheel, the better."
Donnie Wilson Motorsports program manager Bond Suss says he hasn't spoken to Nemechek about coming on board. With that said, Nemechek would be interested in a reunion with Kennon, while working with Suss -- who is also the TD2 driver development program general manager. With that said, Nemechek also said he'd like to race under the NEMCO banner again too. He kept his options a secret for now.
"Of course, being able to work with Gere and all of the guys at Donnie Wilson’s team with Bond and all of them would be a great opportunity," Nemechek said. "They do really well with the Toyota TD2/TRD program. Everyone that has gotten behind the wheel has definitely been fast in their supers and have been able to win races. I would love to do it. Don’t know if would be with them or with our NEMCO Motorsports team. We still have some late models there. I think there is one or two that we haven’t converted to a road race car, so who knows."
Nemechek had a brief but illustrious run in Super Late Model racing from 2012-2015. He won the Snowball Derby in 2014. He won the Snowflake 100 a year later. He won a Pro Late Model All-American 400 in 2014 as well.
Nemechek captured three consecutive wins in the Pro Late Model portion of Speedfest at Cordele from 2014-2016 and won consecutive Master of the Pros 144 in 2015 and 2016 when it was held at I-44 Raceway.
Since then, of course, Nemechek has earned accolades across all three NASCAR national touring divisions.
He has 11 Truck Series victories, including five in his return to full-time competition with KBM last year, but also has an Xfinity Series win with Joe Gibbs Racing last year. He ran a full-time Cup Series season in 2020 with Front Row Motorsports where his underlying metrics rated well against his underfunded equipment.
Nemechek is the defending winner of this weekend's Truck Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and is generally regarded as the championship favorite after their five win season in 2021.
“I think looking back at last year we were pretty much the favorite all year to win the title," Nemechek said. "I think coming into this year we definitely had some great momentum on our side from 2021. I feel like we added a lot of value to our notebook last year. I became familiar with my crew chief and my engineer talking on the radio and communicating. What’s going to be different is the practice and qualifying – we’ve got to figure that out again. We didn’t qualify so great in Phoenix and one thing led to another. I definitely think we have a little work to do there.
"We were able to win both stages at Daytona. We got caught up in the last lap accident there coming to the white, but that’s Daytona. I’m looking forward to Vegas. I got my first win here last year at Las Vegas Motor Speedway with KBM. Hopefully we can go out and repeat and beat the boss again."