In second Xfinity start of the season, John Hunter Nemechek has an impressive run

LAT Images

 John Hunter Nemechek (third) led Toyota with a third-place finish in the Go Bowling 250 at Richmond Raceway on Saturday afternoon. It is the first top-five finish for Sam Hunt Racing in their 36th Xfinity Series event.

Toyota Racing Post-Race Recap

NASCAR Xfinity Series

Richmond Raceway

Race 25 of 33 – 187.5 miles, 250 laps


1st, Noah Gragson*

2nd, Justin Haley*


4th, Justin Allgaier*

5th, Riley Herbst*






*non-Toyota driver


JOHN HUNTER NEMECHEK, No. 26 Safeway Toyota Supra, Sam Hunt Racing

Finishing Position: 3rd

Can you describe the racing out there today?

“It was overall a really solid day for our Safeway Toyota Supra for Sam Hunt. Just thankful for the opportunity from Sam, Toyota, all of our great partners that help us get to the racetrack. It was an off weekend for me in the Truck side, so good for me to put myself back in the seat. I felt like I learned a lot today for myself. In these Playoffs, it’s more about staying mentally tough. We were able to do so today. Racing was crazy. We were able to take a couple gambles I felt like and I’m glad the two cautions at the end there came out or we probably wouldn’t have finished where we did. Thankful for the opportunity. Looking forward to whatever is next. I don’t have any more with Sam this year, but who knows what the future holds.”

Top-five run, how was your day?

“Solid run. The Safeway Toyota Supra was fast. We were able to drive from the back there to the top-10. We ran top-10 pretty much all day. I don’t think we had enough of a car to win there, but we definitely made the most out of the day. Just validating Sam Hunt Racing’s equipment and it’s definitely fast. I wish we wouldn’t have got off on the first adjustment. I made the wrong call or asked for the wrong thing, thinking that is what I needed and it put us a little bit behind the eight ball, but overall really solid day for our Safeway Toyota Supra.”

How important was it to you to run well knowing you were running for a guy who was from here?

“It feels good. It’s nice to know that this is his hometrack and we were able to run really well. It’s nice for me to be in the seat with the weekend off as well.”

Is it nice to not have to think about points and you could just go for the win?

“Coming into today, if you would have asked Sam (Hunt), myself or any of the guys that we would have been a contender to win the race, we would have told you that we probably wouldn’t have thought so. We came in here hoping to run top-10 all day, and we were able to accomplish that and come home third. That means a lot to me and for this team being able to come on and be able to validate Sam’s equipment. We know the potential that it has now and everything played to our favor today, and that’s hard to do here at Richmond. Just thankful for the opportunity.”

SAM HUNT, Team Owner, Sam Hunt Racing

Finishing Position: 3rd

What does this finish mean to you?

“I think the emotion stems from years of doing this the unconventional way, the hard way. To finally put it all together and see the product and to just really be a part of this thing and be a competitor is everything I’ve worked for. It’s surreal.”

Toyota Racing PR