John Hunter Nemechek Leads KBM at Richmond

John Hunter Nemechek leads KBM's one-two-four finish at Richmond Raceway in the ToyotaCare 250 for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

John Hunter Nemechek leads KBM at Richmond Raceway with one-two-four finishes in the ToyotaCare 250 for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series.

Earning his second NASCAR Camping World Truck Series win in the last four races, John Hunter Nemechek had to hold off his boss Kyle Busch to do so Saturday afternoon. Nemechek scored the victory by a slim 0.307-seconds over Busch in the ToyotaCare 250 at Richmond Raceway. 

JH Nemechek and Kyle Busch

Nemechek, 23, led a race-best 114 of the 250 laps in his No. 4 KBM Toyota, reclaiming the lead for good with 17 laps remaining after racing back from a late-race pit stop. Busch, who has 12 wins overall at Richmond – six in the NASCAR Cup Series and six in the Xfinity Series – was pushing for his first truck series win at the three-quarter-mile track. 

The KBM truck team has now won four consecutive races – two for Nemechek (Las Vegas also), Busch (Atlanta), and Martin Truex Jr. (Bristol).

John Hunter Nemechek Leads KBM at Richmond

For a while it looked like KBM may earn a sweep – with Nemechek, Busch, and teammate Chandler Smith running one-two-three in the waning laps, but Tyler Ankrum got around Smith with a handful of laps remaining to take third place. Smith held on for fourth place – the 19-year old’s best finish of the season.

The Rest of the Best

Former series champion Johnny Sauter finished fifth, followed by Todd Gilliland, Ben Rhodes, and last year’s Richmond winner Grant Enfinger.  Sam Mayer and Austin Hill round out the top ten. Reigning series champion Sheldon Creed was 11th.

First Nemechek Victory for Aspen

The victory for Nemechek comes just three weeks after his wife gave birth to their first child, daughter Aspen, and they were trackside in the family motorhome for Nemechek’s first win as a dad.

“It’s a never-give-up attitude,” a smiling Nemechek said after the race. “I just can’t thank Kyle, everyone at Toyota, and all our great partners. It’s pretty cool to be able to come out and here do what we did. We had a really fast truck and I’m super proud of all my guys and thankful for them.”

ToyotaCare 250 Recap

The race featured two very different halves. Defending winner Enfinger led 71 of the first 73 laps and earned the Stage 1 victory – his first of the year – in a clean opening to the event. The first caution was the stage break.

Busch’s team got his truck out first from that opening stage caution period, but Nemechek took the lead from his team owner on a restart at lap 100 and held it for most of the duration of the event. Nemechek won Stage 2, finishing just ahead of Enfinger and claiming his series best sixth stage win. 

Nemechek had to really earn the top position from there on out – holding off the field again and again and again. There were seven cautions in the last 110 laps of the race.

Matt Crafton and his ThorSport Racing teammate Johnny Sauter – along with Smith – gambled not to pit late on a caution with 55 laps remaining in the race. Nemechek and Busch and most of the frontrunners opted to pit. The KBM teammates restarted ninth and tenth with Nemechek reclaiming the lead with 17 laps to go.

KBM Team Owner, Kyle Busch Makes a Run at First

Busch made a run at Nemechek after getting around Smith, but was ultimately unable to get close enough to attempt a winning pass.

“It’s awesome,” Busch said of his truck team’s streak. “I joked with John Hunter at the beginning of the year that if you win one and then I win one and you win one and then I win one – it would be pretty good to go back and forth.

“I didn’t think he was serious, but so far that’s kind of the way it’s going so I guess I get Kansas (win).”

The NASCAR Truck Series Point Standings

The two-win tally equals the second-generation NASCAR driver’s season best – and this is only the sixth race of 2021. Nemechek now holds a 20-point advantage over fellow two-race winner Rhodes in the championship standings with the next race set for May 1 at Kansas Speedway (7:30 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Race – 2nd Annual ToyotaCare 250

Richmond Raceway

Richmond, Virginia

Saturday, April 17, 2021

               1. (18)  John Hunter Nemechek, Toyota, 250.

               2. (12)  Kyle Busch(i), Toyota, 250.

               3. (30)  Tyler Ankrum, Chevrolet, 250.

               4. (23)  Chandler Smith #, Toyota, 250.

               5. (19)  Johnny Sauter, Toyota, 250.

               6. (8)  Todd Gilliland, Ford, 250.

               7. (1)  Ben Rhodes, Toyota, 250.

               8. (3)  Grant Enfinger, Toyota, 250.

               9. (40)  Sam Mayer(i), Chevrolet, 250.

               10. (2)  Austin Hill, Toyota, 250.

               11. (9)  Sheldon Creed, Chevrolet, 250.

               12. (13)  Carson Hocevar #, Chevrolet, 250.

               13. (4)  Stewart Friesen, Toyota, 250.

               14. (6)  Zane Smith, Chevrolet, 250.

               15. (29)  Derek Kraus, Toyota, 250.

               16. (25)  Spencer Davis, Toyota, 250.

               17. (14)  Hailie Deegan #, Ford, 250.

               18. (7)  Matt Crafton, Toyota, 250.

               19. (10)  Austin Wayne Self, Chevrolet, 250.

               20. (28)  Danny Bohn, Toyota, 250.

               21. (34)  Timmy Hill(i), Chevrolet, 250.

               22. (27)  Timothy Peters, Chevrolet, 250.

               23. (5)  Raphael Lessard, Chevrolet, 249.

               24. (11)  Tanner Gray, Ford, 249.

               25. (31)  Dawson Cram, Chevrolet, 248.

               26. (36)  Jett Noland, Chevrolet, 247.

               27. (26)  Spencer Boyd, Chevrolet, 247.

               28. (15)  Chase Purdy #, Chevrolet, 245.

               29. (39)  Ryan Reed, Chevrolet, 245.

              30. (32)  Keith McGee, Chevrolet, 244.

               31. (21)  Cory Roper, Ford, 243.

               32. (38)  Norm Benning, Chevrolet, 240.

               33. (37)  Josh Reaume, Toyota, 240.

               34. (35)  Howie Disavino III, Chevrolet, 221.

               35. (22)  Kris Wright #, Chevrolet, Accident, 212.

               36. (20)  Codie Rohrbaugh, Chevrolet, Accident, 195.

               37. (17)  Brett Moffitt, Chevrolet, Handling, 186.

               38. (33)  Jennifer Jo Cobb, Chevrolet, DVP, 168.

               39. (24)  Tate Fogleman, Chevrolet, Accident, 82.

               40. (16)  Ryan Truex, Chevrolet, Rear Gear, 44.

The ToyotaCare 250 Stats

Average Speed of Race Winner:  77.072 mph.

Time of Race:  Two Hrs, 25 Mins, 58 Secs. Margin of Victory:  0.307 Seconds.

Caution Flags:  11 for 79 laps.

Lead Changes:  Nine among six drivers.

Lap Leaders:   B. Rhodes 1-2;G. Enfinger 3-73;K. Busch(i) 74-99;J. Nemechek 100-144;B. Rhodes 145;J. Nemechek 146-197;B. Rhodes 198;M. Crafton 199-209;C. Smith # 210-233;J. Nemechek 234-250.

Leaders Summary (Driver, Times Lead, Laps Led):  John Hunter Nemechek three times for 114 laps; Grant Enfinger one time for 71 laps; Kyle Busch(i) onetime for 26 laps; Chandler Smith # one time for 24 laps; Matt Crafton one time for 11 laps; Ben Rhodes three times for four laps.

Stage 1 Top-Ten: 98,4,51,99,16,42,24,38,19,52

Stage 2 Top-Ten: 4,98,99,16,51,21,24,38,19,18

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