Hemric Rebounds To Top XFINITY Happy Hour

Jacob Seelman Featured, XFINITY 0 Comments

Daniel Hemric led final XFINITY Series practice Friday at Daytona Int’l Speedway. (Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images for NASCAR photo)

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — A minor crash during opening NASCAR XFINITY Series practice on Friday at Daytona Int’l Speedway did little to hinder Daniel Hemric, who led the way during ‘Happy Hour’ later in the afternoon.

Hemric, drafting together with Richard Childress Racing teammate Austin Dillon, took his No. 21 South Point Hotel & Casino Chevrolet Camaro to a best time of 47.041 seconds (191.322 mph) around the 2.5-mile ‘World Center of Racing’.

That lap was Hemric’s best of 13 total circuits on-track during the 50-minute session.

Dillon landed second-fastest overall with a time of 47.044 seconds (191.310 mph), just .003 of a second behind Hemric and more than a tenth of a second clear of JR Motorsports veteran Elliott Sadler, who ended the session third (47.231/190.553).

Title contender Tyler Reddick and Cup Series star Kyle Larson completed the Fast Five, with Ryan Truex in sixth giving Chevrolet a sweep of the top half-dozen positions on the scoreboard.

Joey Logano was the only Ford driver in the top 10, landing seventh for Team Penske, ahead of Spencer Gallagher, Joey Gase and Joe Gibbs Racing’s Brandon Jones — the highest Toyota representative in the session.

Notables outside the top 10 included former series champion Joe Nemechek (11th); young rookie and former Daytona Truck Series winner Kaz Grala (23rd); and the ageless Morgan Shepherd (29th), who is trying to make his 21st-career start at Daytona in the XFINITY Series and first since July of 2016.

Only 32 of the 46 cars on the property took time during the final round of practice.

Among those who didn’t turn a lap were two-time Daytona XFINITY winner Ryan Reed, preseason championship favorite Christopher Bell and fellow series regular Matt Tifft, who moved from Joe Gibbs Racing to Richard Childress Racing during the offseason.

Full practice results can be viewed on the next page…

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