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Nemechek Wins Snowball Derby

| , RacinToday.com Monday, December 8 2014

John Hunter Nemechek celebrates Snowball Derby victory with father Joe Nemechek.

John Hunter Nemechek took the lead on lap 286 of the 300-lap 47th Annual Snowball Derby at Five Flags Speedway in Pensacola, Fla. Sunday and went on to get the victory.

His win came after he finished second in the Snowflake 100 under card event which, because of rain, had finished just hours earlier.

“We definitely had a good car and made the right adjustments all day and when we got up towards the front we figured out that we had a very good race car.” Nemechek said.

Dalton Sargeant finished second, Derek Thorn third, Hunter Robbins fourth and Grant Enfinger fifth.

“It’s a really good run for everyone on this Wauters Motorsports team,” Sargeant said, “to be in contention for the win there at the end is a testament to how we all came together as a team this weekend. We didn’t always have the best practice sessions, and searched around for the best setup, but Richie Wauters and team never gave up and worked extremely hard all weekend to find the balance that showed up in those closing laps. This was a brand new car that we tested a few weeks before the Derby and we knew we were going to have something that we could contend with as soon as we unloaded it. The race got really crazy at times, but having a good car made those 3 and sometimes even 4 wide situations easier, we had really good pitstops all day and as soon as the sun went down the car just took off. Great momentum going into 2015 and now we’ll switch gears and go to work on those plans now.”

Other notable names and their finishes in the event:

* Erik Jones, 27th.

* Corey LaJoie (13th), son of former Busch Series champ Randy LaJoie.

* Ross Kenseth (35th), son of NASCAR star Matt Kenseth.

Nemechek, who started racing in quarter midgets at age five, has made a steady progression and has had much success along the way including winning 15 of 18 races en route to the Allison Legacy Touring Series Championship in 2013. Competing in his NEMCO Motorsports late model is a by-design initiative that has been fundamental in his development.

Competing in his second Snowflake and third Snowball event, he relied on his previous experience there as well as the momentum from his most recent win in the All-American 400 at Fairgrounds Speedway Nashville (Tenn.) on Nov. 1.

“It’s an amazing feeling to be able to win the Snowball Derby and have a bunch of our family here – I’m pretty much speechless.”

Other Pro Late Model Series wins for Nemechek this season include Watermelon Capital Speedway (Cordele, Ga.) on January 26, Milwaukee (Wis.) Mile on June 8 and Lucas Oil Raceway (Indianapolis, Ind.) on September 28.

Nemechek also competed on a limited-schedule in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series where in just 10 starts, he earned an impressive six top-10 finishes including a top-five run at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Plans for 2015 include a similar late model program as well as returning to his No. 8 SWM-NEMCO Motorsports entry in truck series action. At age 17, Nemechek is restricted to running on tracks 1.25-miles or less and the road course. Turning 18 on June 11, he will finish out the remainder of the truck series schedule beginning with Kentucky Speedway on July 9, 2015.

| , RacinToday.com Monday, December 8 2014
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