Daniel Hemric got a crash course in driving a Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series car this week and thankfully it was not a literal one.
Hemric, who is competing this season in the NASCAR Xfinity Series playoffs with Richard Childress Racing, was planning to enjoy a vacation in Mexico this past week with his wife, Kenzie, when he received an unexpected call to return to North Carolina.
“I was taking my wife down there on vacation for her birthday and as soon as we touched down I got call from some guys at RCR who asked me if I minded driving a Cup car Tuesday and Wednesday at a test,” Hemric said Wednesday at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
“My first time in a Cup car was (Tuesday) morning.”
Asked if it was worth skipping vacation, Hemric didn’t hesitate with this answer: “Absolutely. But don’t tell her that.”
Hemric filled in for Paul Menard in an RCR Chevrolet in Goodyear’s two-day tire test Tuesday and Wednesday on the new “roval” course at CMS – a 2.42-mile, 18-turn combination of the oval track and infield road course.
Both the Xfinity and Cup series will run on the course next fall at Charlotte, when it becomes the first road course in both series’ playoffs.
Hemric joined Cup series veterans Martin Truex Jr., Kurt Busch and Jamie McMurray in the test.
“I’ve had a lot of fun learning this configuration and participating in my first Goodyear test of any kind in NASCAR along with all the other variables,” Hemric said. “I’ve been having fun with it and I think we’ve made a lot of progress toward what we’re going to see here next fall.
“The first two or three runs was about getting me acclimated (to the car) but since then I think we’ve done a good job trying to figure what we need here for fans to see good racing and a lot of action, which I think you’re going to see.”