'The Big One' Consigns Daniel Hemric to a 26th-Place Finish in Daytona
After a successful Daytona International Speedway debut in last week's ARCA Racing Series event, Daniel Hemric was ready to take on the superspeedway in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series (NCWTS). However, a promising run came to an untimely end when 'The Big One' struck, damaging nearly half the field and collecting Hemric in a wreck that sent him to the garage early, ultimately relegating him to a disappointing 26th-place finish.
Taking the green flag from the 20th position, Hemric's No. 14 California Clean Power Chevrolet was scored in the 14th position by the time the first caution flag of the night came out on lap 15 for a multi-truck wreck. The combination of an experienced spotter and good driver instincts allowed Hemric to narrowly avoid potentially disastrous contact in the melee, and after a brief visit to pit road for fuel and chassis adjustments, the young driver restarted in the 12th position. Working his way toward the front of the pack, Hemric was in eighth place when a single-truck incident brought out the event's second yellow flag. Opting not to pit, the California Clean Power Chevrolet restarted in the sixth position on lap 30. For the next 18 laps, Hemric remained solidly in the top 10, drafting with the leaders and his teammates in the front drafting pack. However, the promising run took a turn on lap 48 when the leaders checked up, causing an accordion effect through the field and resulting in a massive 12-truck pileup. With a cluster of destroyed trucks in his immediate path, Hemric had nowhere to go, and he was collected in the fray. The No. 14 was towed to the garage with terminal damage, forcing it to retire with 52 laps remaining, ultimately resulting in a 26th-place finish.
Daniel Hemric on Daytona International Speedway:
"It's really heartbreaking to get the finish we did considering how well we ran all week. We didn't qualify as well as we wanted to after our strategy didn't quite work out, but we were able to put that behind us. We made a lot of progress throughout the race and put ourselves in position for a solid top 10; we possibly had a shot to win the thing. We just got stacked up there on the bottom and it didn't work out. When they crashed in front of me, I had nowhere to go. Wrong place, wrong time. I had a lot of fun and I'll take everything we learned here to Talladega [Superspeedway] in the fall. I'm really grateful to NTS Motorsports for building me such a good truck and to California Clean Power for making this all possible. I'm really excited to get to Atlanta [Motor Speedway] and see how our mile-and-a-half program is. We're going to move forward and not let one bad finish affect us."
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