Nemechek Not Surprised by Recent Success DARLINGTON, S.C. (Nov. 10, 2004) - One of the most frequently asked questions for Joe Nemechek has been what has made the difference in the 01 team's late-season surge. "I wish I could say it was my...
Nemechek Not Surprised by Recent Success
DARLINGTON, S.C. (Nov. 10, 2004) - One of the most frequently asked questions for Joe Nemechek has been what has made the difference in the 01 team's late-season surge.
"I wish I could say it was my driving, but I haven't changed anything," offered Nemechek. "Nor did the team wake up one morning and all of a sudden had a light-bulb moment. The fact of the matter is that this has always been a talented and inspired team. We just had too many weird and crazy things happen to us this year when we had top-10 and top-five cars. It's good that more fans and media are now noticing us. But in reality, none of our recent success has surprised me."
In the last eight races Nemechek has put together one of the best streaks of his career. His recent run of one win, three top fives, five top 10s, two poles and one outside pole started Sept. 19 in New Hampshire, the same race that kicked off the much ballyhooed Chase for the Nextel Cup.
Though he didn't crack the top 10 in last Sunday's race in Phoenix, Nemechek feels the team still maintained its momentum after making a late-race charge to finish 12th on the one-mile oval.
That all-important momentum is what Nemechek plans to take to the penultimate race of the season at historic Darlington Raceway.
And when Nemechek gets strapped into the 01 Chevrolet for Sunday's Mountain Dew Southern 500, it will be in the blue, white and red USG Sheetrock Brand colors. This will mark the fourth time this season that USG Sheetrock will be the primary sponsor on Nemechek's 01 car. The U.S. Army, Nemechek's primary sponsor for 32 of 36 Nextel Cup races, will be a major associate at this weekend's event.
While Nemechek has recently powered the U.S. Army car to impressive finishes, he has also had success when USG Sheetrock was the primary sponsor. The start of his streak - a sixth-place finish at the fall race in New Hampshire - was in the USG Sheetrock car, and his previous USG race - at Chicago (July 11) he finished eighth.
"We want to build on our recent momentum, not only to finish the 2004 season with a hearty bang, but to have something positive to take into the 2005 season - which starts in only a few months," said Nemechek.
"Although Darlington Raceway is one of the most fun tracks to compete on, it can also be a beast if you don't have the right setup and proper tire management. This is definitely a driver's racetrack. There's no room for error. One little misstep, you'll have one of those infamous Darlington Stripes on the side of your car."
Nemechek's best finish at Darlington was sixth - at the 1999 fall race. At this year's spring race, he finished 20th.