It took a few months but Daniel Hemric has figured out the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and has suddenly taken on the appearance of a driver that could compete for wins and a championship if given the opportunity next season.
As it stands, Hemric doesn’t have anything lined up for 2016 even though he has begun talks with NTS Motorsports about a sophomore effort in the No. 14 Chevrolet Silverado.
“That’s what we’re trying to figure out right now,” Hemric said on Monday night during the Popular Speed TearDown Radio show. “I can’t thank enough everyone at California Clean Power and Chevrolet for letting me do this.
“As far as the future goes, I don’t have anything planned for right now in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. I don’t want to say the cliché that we’re taking it week-to-week but I’m just going to do my job. If we do that, I have faith that it will all turn out the way it’s supposed to.”
Hemric won’t need faith if he continues driving the way he has over the past two months. He hasn’t finished worse than ninth since Eldora in July and has climbed from 10th to fifth in the championship standings since Charlotte in May.
Despite a steep learning curve and rough start to his Truck Series career, Hemric has turned the corner and looks like a championship contender while racing head-to-head with the likes of Matt Crafton, Erik Jones and Tyler Reddick. Hemric says he isn’t sure what prompted the turnaround but was quick to praise his team, led by crew chief Ryan McKinney.
“I wish I knew what it was,” Hemric said. “We would multiply it and make a run at the whole thing this year. It’s just my guys, man. It’s Ryan McKinney and (owner) Bob Newberry giving me what we need in order to be successful at the highest level.
“We just have so much heart and so much passion and it’s been really cool to our guys so excited while taking this program to the next level, unloading fast everywhere we go. It’s really shown the past couple of weeks and it’s just exciting to be a part of it from the ground up — especially when you think about where we started at Daytona.”
All that remains for Hemric to do in order to push the issue on finding support and partners for a second season, is to win, and he feels like his team is close to achieving that goal.
“I’m not going to say that we have to do just one thing in order to win because you have to step everything you do to a higher level,” Hemric said. “It’s getting off pit road under green or being more precise on the set-up and feedback so I can let Ryan know what he needs to do.
“So if we can step up every facet of our game over the final couple of weeks, we’re going to have a shot at Victory Lane for sure.”
Hemric likely deserves a second shot at the Truck Series based on his progress this season but a victory over the stretch run will cement that notion and make it awfully hard to ignore.
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