Daniel Hemric has spent the last several seasons in NASCAR’s minor leagues; the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series and NASCAR XFINITY Series. But tonight, the 27-year-old will make his Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series debut.
It’s been a long time coming for the Kannapolis, North Carolina native. He’s had to work hard.
Whether it be in one-off Truck Series rides in 2013 and ’14, or running full-time in the Trucks and XFINITY, he’s worked his way up. Between driving for three now defunct Truck Series teams in Eddie Sharp Racing, NTS Motorsports and Brad Keselowski Racing; Hemric proved himself. He earned a drive with Richard Childress Racing last year in the XFINITY Series, and now finds himself in a Cup ride for them tonight, proof that NASCAR’s ladder system is still alive.
One thing that’s certain about Hemric is he’s a true talent. He’s moved up from legends cars to NASCAR’s Whelen and Southern Modified Tour and won prestigious races at the short track level—one of which being the 2015 All-American 400 at the Nashville Fairgrounds.
Hemric, while not one of the flashiest drivers on the circuit, also shows improvement with every race he runs. He ran well in the XFINITY Series in 2017, but it was towards the end of the year when he really began to shine. He advanced as far as the final round of the XFINITY playoffs, finishing fourth in points in his rookie season.
Hemric’s also been able to keep that momentum heading into 2018. Just eight races into this season, he has five top-10 finishes along with three top-fives. He’s also run up front and led laps in half of the races thus far, leading 118 laps so far in 2018. That eclipses the 70 laps total he led in 2017.
It’s hard to predict what to expect out of Hemric’s debut tonight. He’s been quick in practice, and given the equipment he’s driving, should run well. If RCR continues to put him behind the wheel of a Cup car, Hemric has the potential to continue improving, just like every other series he’s run thus far.