Gander Outdoor Truck Series

NCWTS: John Hunter Nemechek Comes Close to Pulling Off Emotional Win

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The old saying is “It’s all in the name.” However, for the Nemechek family, a name is just as thick as blood. In 1997, John Nemechek, the younger bother of Joe Nemechek was killed in a wreck at Homestead-Miami Speedway. To pay tribute to his younger brother, Joe named his son after his late brother, John Hunter.

Fast forward to the 2016 NASCAR Camping World Truck Series season finale, the Ford EcoBoost 200, John Hunter Nemechek took to the track that took his uncle that he never met for the first time.

After a strong qualifying effort, John Hunter put his No. 8, another tribute to his late uncle, started the race on the outside of row one, in P2.

In all the loop data by NASCAR, John Hunter was always in the top-three at the quarter, half, ¾ and end of the race. He led five different time for a total of 24 laps.

“That one was for Uncle John,” stated John Hunter. “Hopefully he is smiling up there. I know he was looking over us. Almost got the win for him!”

Despite never winning a race, the late John Nemechek was honored by his nephew when John Hunter took his No. 8 to victory lane in Chicagoland. John’s No. 8 was doused with Gatorade while no one in the Nemechek family had a dry eye.

Despite not running a complete season, John Hunter made the most out of his 18 starts. In addition to his first national touring series victory, he posted eight top-5’s and ten top-10’s. In his last 10 starts of 2016, John Hunter finished outside the top-10 twice and posted six top-fives, including his win at Chicago. The more impressive stat of John Hunter’s is that in the last four races he posted three runner-up finishes at Martinsville, Phoenix and Homestead-Miami.

The 2015 season might be over, but one driver, John Hunter Nemechek has a lot to look forward to in 2016.

For more on the Nemechek family, watch this emotional video by Fox Sports 1.

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About Jacob Mullins

Jacob Mullins serves as the managing editor and senior NASCAR writer covering all three national touring series's. You can find him on on Twitter at @JMulls15. An intercollegiate athletic administrator by trade, Mullins can be found at the big tracks as well as the local short tracks in the Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania area. Mullins enjoys social media, photography and graphic design. A native of West Chester, Pennsylvania, Mullins follows all forms of racing, Major League Baseball (Baltimore Orioles) and college football (Virginia Tech Hokies).

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