After finishing fifth, eighth, and 12th during the last three races, John Hunter Nemechek brought the No. 4 Kyle Busch Motorsports truck back to victory lane at Charlotte Motor Speedway with their first win since Richmond this past April.
“Started today, hitting the fence in the third lap of practice and having to fix our truck and luckily we were able to fix it,” Nemechek said. “I didn’t hit the fence too hard, I don’t know how I didn’t pancake the right side. Overall, the team did an awesome job repairing it.”
“You couldn’t really pass during that first stage, the PJ1 wasn’t really run in yet and everybody was kind of bottom hunting. Pit crew did an awesome job during the first stop, which helped us gained track position, and led from there on out. We had a dominate truck I feel like. We got damage there when the 13 (Johnny Sauter) ran into someone who was stopped on the top. Knocked our camera off that created a big hole in the roof. Overall, a solid victory, and nice to get our third win.”
Nemechek started fourth based on the metric system after qualifying was canceled due to afternoon rain showers. From there, the Mooresville, North Carolina native finished third in Stage 1, took the lead on Lap 39 to win Stage 2 and regained the lead on Lap 72. He went on to win his third Camping World Truck Series win of the 2021 season.
Todd Gilliland and the No. 38 Front Row Motorsports truck were given the pole position.
Stage 1: Lap 1 – Lap 34
Stage 1 was relatively caution-free as the 2020 Truck Series champion, Sheldon Creed, dominated the stage and took home his first stage victory of the year. Gilliland, Nemechek, Austin Hill, Zane Smith, Tyler Ankrum, Derek Kraus, Matt Crafton, Ben Rhodes and Hailie Deegan completed the Top 10 finishers for Stage 1.
Stage 2: Lap 38 – Lap 60
Nemechek shone in the second stage when he gained the lead one lap after the restart. Two cautions would slow the stage. The first one occurred on Lap 49 when the No. 15 of Tanner Gray and the No. 32 of Bret Holmes both made hard contact in Turn 4 causing damage to both trucks. The second caution came on Lap 55 as Stage 1 winner, Creed, wrecked in Turn 4. It appeared as though Creed was going to save the truck but he was collected by the No. 23 of Chase Purdy, eventually ending Creed’s night due to too much damage.
During the caution, race leader Nemechek came down pit road for a pit stop.
A one-lap dash restart ended Stage 2 and this time, the No. 21 of Zane Smith took the green-checkered flag followed by Austin Hill, Majeski, Kraus, Truex, Crafton, Hocevar, Friesen, Enfinger and Nemechek to round out the top 10. Unfortunately for Smith, he was penalized for having pit crew members over the wall too soon.
Stage 3: Lap 68 – Lap 134
On Lap 72, Nemechek retook the lead and had a comfortable advantage heading into the final pit stops with 33 laps to go when he pitted. However, things got interesting with 20 to go, when the No. 13 of Johnny Sauter and the No. 14 of Trey Hutchens had a scary accident on the frontstretch. Sauter had nowhere to go when Hutchens was slowed on the fronstretch and he hit the back of the No. 14 hard, causing major damage to both trucks. Sauter suffered extensive damage as the entire right side of his truck was torn off with the chassis of the truck exposed.
Meanwhile, Nemechek was leading the race and had some minor damage above the windshield. After the late yellow, there was a restart with 10 laps to go. His only challenger during the final laps was the youngster, Carson Hocevar, who was trying to chase down Nemechek for his first win.
But ultimately, Nemechek hit his marks as the race wound down and brought home Kyle Busch Motorsport’s third win of the season.
Carson Hocevar, Ben Rhodes, Stewart Friesen, Todd Gilliland, Chandler Smith, Ty Majeski, Derek Kraus, Austin Hill, and Zane Smith completed the Top 10.
Nemechek led three times for 71 laps en route to victory. There were five cautions for 31 laps and 12 lead changes among nine different leaders.
Official Results of the North Carolina Education Lottery 200 at Charlotte Motor Speedway:
- John Hunter Nemechek, led 71 laps
- Carson Hocevar, led five laps
- Ben Rhodes
- Stewart Friesen, led one lap
- Todd Gilliland, led five laps
- Chandler Smith
- Ty Majeski
- Derek Kraus
- Austin Hill
- Zane Smith, won Stage 2, led 13 laps
- Christian Eckes, led three laps
- Ryan Truex, led one lap
- Hailie Deegan, 1 lap down
- Grant Enfinger, 1 lap down
- Jack Wood, 1 lap down
- Tyler Ankrum, 1 lap down, led two laps
- Austin Wayne Self, 1 lap down
- Timmy Hill, 1 lap down
- Bayley Currey, 1 lap down
- Drew Dollar, 1 lap down
- Dawson Cram, 1 lap down
- Tanner Gray, 1 lap down
- Kris Wright, 2 laps down
- Danny Bohn, 3 laps down
- Cory Roper, 5 laps down
- Spencer Boyd, 6 laps down
- CJ McLaughlin, 7 laps down
- Akinori Ogata, 9 laps down
- Keith McGee, 11 laps down
- Matt Crafton, 20 laps down
- Johnny Sauter, OUT, Accident
- Trey Hutchens III, OUT, Accident
- Jennifer Jo Cobb, OUT, Suspension
- Chase Purdy, OUT, Damage Vehicle Policy
- Sheldon Creed, OUT, won Stage 1, led 33 laps
- Bret Holmes, OUT, Accident
- Tate Fogleman, OUT, Rear Gear
- Timothy Peters, OUT, Steering
Up Next: The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will head to Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday June 12 live on Fox Sports 1 and MRN Radio at 1:00 p.m./ET.