AS THE TOP STAGE POINTS EARNER AND FIFTH PLACE FINISHER, HEMRIC ERASED AN 18 POINT DIFFICTE AND EDGED OUT COLE CUSTER FOR THE FOURTH SEEDING.
November 16, 2017
Starting from the 7th position, Daniel Hemric drove the #21 Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff RCR Chevrolet to fourth in stage one, 3rd in stage two, and then raced #00 Cole Custer head-to-head in the final stage for the fourth seed position into the Championship Final Race. Hemric, whose car was strong on long-runs had moved ahead of Custer with 40 laps remaining and looked inevitable, but a caution with just 18 laps remaining changed the complexion of the race. The #21 came to pit lane for two tires are restarted the race with 13 laps remaining in second place. The #00 also pitted, but took four tires and restarted sixth. Custer moved past Daniel with less than 10 laps left, but on the final lap the #21 moved back past the #00 coming to the finish line.
“I’m just so proud of everybody at Richard Childress Racing – not just today, but all year. We’ve overcome so much as a group. A huge thanks to all of our partners who kept believing in us, giving us faith and providing us everything we need to get to the racetrack each week. It all came down to a restart with 10 or 12 laps to go and everybody’s hearts are on the line and everybody’s season is on the line. I’m so proud of these guys. I’m glad we could prevail. It was our last race with Smokey Mountain Herbal Snuff on the car and I’m proud to give them a strong finish this weekend. To know that we could race like we did, race with the 00 (Cole Custer) there at the end knowing the points situation is great. I know we were both giving it all we could. We didn’t take a breath at all probably the last five or six laps. It’s been fun battling all of these guys all year. One lap, one moment, that’s what the NASCAR Playoffs are about. It’s really cool to know four Chevrolets are going to race for the championship at Homestead. Hats off to our manufacturer that supports us. It’s been a few years since Richard Childress Racing has been able to run for a championship, so I’m proud to be able to do it for them this year.” - Daniel Hemric
Hemric drove the #13 Geico Chevrolet in Saturday’s first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice at Phoenix, just in case Ty Dillon would be called home for the birth of his first child on Sunday.
The Xfinity Championship finalists are William Byron, Elliott Sadler, Justin Allgaier, and Daniel Hemric. The highest finisher amongst the four will be crowned the champion. The final race to determine the 2017 Xfinity Champion at Homestead-Miami Speedway will take place Saturday November 18th beginning at 3:30 PM eastern and televised on the NBC Sports Network.
Poppy Bank of Santa Rosa California (formerly First Community Bank of Santa Rosa) returns as Daniel’s primary sponsor for the Championship run at Homestead-Miami. Poppy Bank sponsored his first ever speedway race in the 2014 Truck Series Finale at the track.
“Randall Burnett, #21 crew chief came to RCR earlier this year and was a great addition. Everyone at RCR has worked hand-in-hand all season and that has made my relationship with Randall (as my new crew chief) that much better. We’re an open book, we’re all pulling in the same direction, we’re all making sure we have the same goals. That means doing whatever we can as a group to make sure we’re going in the right direction. You never want to lose your crew chief, especially in the part of the season in which we lost Danny Stockman, but I feel like it has made us stronger as an XFINITY organization within RCR. Hopefully, it continues to show this weekend at Homestead with this No. 21 Poppy Bank Chevrolet.”