Daniel Hemric’s Cup Series career with Richard Childress Racing is a one and done.
RCR announced Tuesday that Hemric, 28, wouldn’t be retained by the team for the 2020 season. That move appears to open the door for reigning Xfinity Series champion Tyler Reddick to take Hemric’s No. 8 car in the Cup Series next year. Reddick moved to RCR’s Xfinity Series team in 2019 after winning the 2018 title with JR Motorsports.
“Daniel is a very talented driver and an outstanding person,” the team release said. “We’d like to thank him for his commitment and dedication to RCR the past three years and wish him continued success in his future endeavors.”
Hemric is currently 25th in the points standings and has one top-five finish and two top-10 finishes.
Forever grateful to Richard & everyone at @RCRracing for the opportunity. I’m disappointed it ended like this, but we’ve got nine more races together & some team goals that are still within reach. I’m going to do all I can to make sure we get those & finish the season strong.— Daniel Hemric (@DanielHemric) September 17, 2019
He’s gotten better as the season has progressed, however. He was flat awful in his first nine races. Hemric was 28th in the standings after the spring Richmond race and had an average finish of 26th.
Since then, Hemric has been demonstrably better. Better than his teammate Austin Dillon, even. That Richmond Race was Dillon’s best finish of the year (sixth). In the 18 races since that race, Hemric has an average finish of 20.8 while Dillon’s average finish is 22.9.
Dillon, the grandson of team owner Richard Childress, is currently 21st in the standings despite three poles. The 2019 season is the first time in four seasons that he hasn’t made the playoffs.
Reddick has five Xfinity wins
RCR has been a two-car operation ever since Paul Menard left the team and took the Menards sponsorship to Wood Brothers Racing. Expanding back to three full-time cars to accommodate Reddick’s potential move to Cup never seemed like a feasible option for the team without significant additional funding. And it’s not like RCR has performed strongly as a two-car operation in 2019 anyway.
That’s been a different story for Reddick in the Xfinity Series after the team scaled back its multi-car efforts in that series to focus on Reddick’s No. 2 car in 2019. Reddick has five wins in the Xfinity Series this season including in Saturday’s race at Las Vegas. He’s also remarkably finished in the top 10 in 22 of the season’s 26 races.
Hemric ran two Xfinity seasons for RCR
Hemric joined RCR ahead of the 2016 Xfinity Series season when he moved over from Brad Keselowski Racing in the Truck Series. In two seasons with RCR he finished in the top five 23 times and made the final four of the playoffs in both seasons.
Somewhat strangely, Hemric has never won a race in either the Truck or Xfinity Series despite finishing in the top 10 on 69 different occasions in 116 career starts in NASCAR’s Nos. 2 and 3 series.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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