NASCAR XFINITY Series Rookie of the Year contender Daniel Hemric finished Saturday’s 300-mile race at Bristol Motor Speedway a bit frustrated in the fifth spot but proud of the team’s accomplishments throughout the day. Although he missed out on the overall race win, Hemric earned the victory in Stage 2 of the race and claimed the $100,000 XFINITY Racing Dash 4 Cash prize at the end of the day.
“This whole day is just a testament to everyone on the No. 21 Blue Gate Bank Chevrolet team and everyone at Richard Childress Racing,” said Hemric. “I was hoping we could get up there and earn the overall victory, but to take home the $100,000 Dash 4 Cash prize and win Stage 2 of the race is big for this group.”
Hemric’s day was full of ups-and-downs after starting in the eighth spot. The No. 21 Blue Gate Bank Chevrolet fell a lap down to the leader at the end of Stage 1, but was inside the top 10 when it happened. Getting the free pass at the end of the stage, Hemric was able to fight his way back toward the front of the field.
Using strategy, the team stayed on the track under caution at the end of the second stage and took the win, earning a playoff point.
The rookie contender also had a vibration on the right rear late in the race while running inside the top 10, but was fortunate enough to get a timely caution and bring the car to the attention of the Danny Stockman-led team. Avoiding incidents in the close laps of the race, Hemric was in contention for the victory late and took the checkered flag in the fifth position.
“The way the rain delays worked, we were able to play a strategy game and crew chief Danny Stockman made the call to stay out at the end of Stage 2, which led to the win there and got us a playoff point,” said Hemric. “We’re continuing to improve as a group and hopefully today was a sign of things to come. Thanks to all of our partners for the support and to XFINITY for putting on this Dash 4 Cash program. We’ll look to go win it again next week in Richmond.”
While Hemric led the charge for the RCR XFINITY Series teams Saturday afternoon, Ty Dillon finished sixth, Austin Dillion was 13th, Brandon Jones 20th and Brendan Gaughan was 35th. Both Jones and Gaughan were involved in separate incidents, while Austin Dillon suffered damage to his car during the final caution of the event.
— RCR (@RCRracing) April 22, 2017