John Nemechek

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For his namesake, the son of Joe Nemechek, see John Hunter Nemechek.
John Nemechek
John Nemechek.jpg
Born (1970-03-12)March 12, 1970
Lakeland, Florida, United States
Died March 21, 1997(1997-03-21) (aged 27)
Homestead, Florida, United States
Cause of death Major head injuries from racing accident at Homestead-Miami Speedway
NASCAR Nationwide Series career
1 race(s) run over 1 year(s)
Best champ.
finish
92nd (1994)
First race 1994 Kroger 200 (IRP)
NASCAR Camping World Truck Series career
43 race(s) run over 3 year(s)
Best champ.
finish
13th (1996)
First race 1995 Copper World Classic (Phoenix)
Last race 1997 Florida Dodge Dealers 400 (Homestead)
Wins Top tens Poles
0 4 0

John Hunter Nemechek (March 12, 1970—March 21, 1997) was an American race car driver who most notably competed in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.

Life and racing career[edit]

Nemechek's 1996 truck

The younger brother of four-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race winner Joe Nemechek, John followed his brother into racing, running his first race at the age of twelve in an 80 class dirtbike race. After a quick progression to the 250cc class, he moved onto mini-stock cars, where he raced against his brother, and eventually late-model stocks.

When he wasn't racing, Nemechek served as the front-tire changer on Joe's pit crew, and was on Joe's 1992 NASCAR Busch Series Championship winning team. He would begin attempting NASCAR races himself, and ran one Busch Race at IRP in 1994.[1] He finished 30th after his #89 Chevrolet suffered engine failure. The following season, he began racing in the new Craftsman Truck Series, driving at first for Redding Motorsports,[2] and then for his brother's NEMCO Motorsports. In the first year of competition, Nemechek ran 16 races and had two top-ten finishes. He followed that up with two more top-tens in 1996 and a thirteenth place finish in points, running a single truck he built himself titled The War Wagon under his own team, Chek Racing.

Death[edit]

On March 16, 1997, Nemechek was running a truck race at Homestead-Miami Speedway when with 25 laps to go, he suddenly lost control of his truck and slammed into the Turn 1 wall driver's-side first, suffering major head injuries. He was extricated and transported to a nearby hospital, where he clung to life over the next five days before finally succumbing on March 21, just nine days after his 27th birthday.

Legacy[edit]

Following the incident, Homestead was reconfigured into a true oval with a six-degree banking to reduce the possibility of the type of crash that killed Nemechek. His brother Joe was able to pay tribute to his brother by winning a Busch Series race that November at the now-reconfigured circuit; he later named his son John Hunter after his late brother.

Motorsports career results[edit]

NASCAR[edit]

(key) (Bold - Pole position awarded by qualifying time. Italics - Pole position earned by points standings or practice time. * – Most laps led.)

Busch Series[edit]

Craftsman Truck Series[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Barker, John (August 5, 1994). "Third Sportsman 100 tonight at L.I.S.". The Ledger (Lakeland, FL). p. 2D. Retrieved 2014-04-02. 
  2. ^ Barker, John (December 13, 1994). "Younger Nemechek to drive Super Truck Series". The Ledger (Lakeland, FL). p. 3D. Retrieved 2014-04-02. 

External links[edit]