INDIANAPOLIS – Daniel Hemric’s 2018 NASCAR XFINITY Series season has been a wave of up and down results. He had 13 top seven finishes in the first 16 races of the year. Then, he had four finishes of 11th or worse over the next five. But, after a fifth place finish in his No. 21 Chevrolet in Monday’s rain delayed Lilly Diabetes 250 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, he’s heading into the playoffs with some positive momentum.
The 2018 regular season ends next Saturday at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Heading into that race, Hemric has three top five finishes in his last five starts on the year. The North Carolina native says that the streak that he’s on his huge for his playoff hopes.
The only thing is they need to find a little more speed to be a serious contender.
“It’s big,” Hemric told me after his 16th top 10 finish of the season. “I feel like we’ve ran top five for 15-percent of the races this year and once we get into the playoffs we have to figure out how to take that next step as a group. We have to figure out what to do to elevate to another level to contend for a championship. The good things are that we’re consistent which is good and those things will take you a long way, but not a championship as we’ve seen last year. Hopefully we can improve on that speed a little bit going into the playoffs.”
Hemric’s manufacturer in Chevrolet led all 100 laps on Monday which was a feat that he said was big for them.
“That’s a cool stat. It’s tough to do with the strategy and short pitting on the stages like we did, Hemric said. “That’s a testament to Chevy. As a motor program back at the shop at RCR I feel like we took a big step forward because this package has kind of held us back a little bit in the past.”