Entering Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Phoenix Raceway, Joe Gibbs Racing’s Daniel Hemric comes off his eighth career runner-up finish in the series last week at Las Vegas.
Only NASCAR Hall of Famer Dale Jarrett had more runner-up finishes prior to his first Xfinity win. Jarrett finished second 10 times before finally breaking through in Aug. 1986 at Orange County (N.C.) Speedway.
One of Hemric’s eight runner-up finishes came at Phoenix. While driving for Richard Childress Racing, he finished second in the Nov. 2018 race to Christopher Bell.
Will Saturday finally be Hemric’s day to win? He and JGR teammate Brandon Jones start on the front row, with reigning series champion Austin Cindric and last week’s winner, AJ Allmendinger, behind them in Row 2.
Details for Saturday’s Phoenix Xfinity race:
(All times are Eastern)
START: Command to start engines given by Sandra, Alley and Brice of Arizona 811 at 5:32 p.m. … Green flag is scheduled to wave at 5:41 p.m.
PRERACE: Garage opens at 11 a.m. … Drivers report to their vehicles at 5:05 p.m. … Driver introductions are at 5:10 p.m. … Invocation given by Tony Stiff of Christ Presbyterian Church at 5:24 p.m. … National anthem performed by MSgt. Melinda Charlton at 5:25 p.m.
DISTANCE: The race is 200 laps (200 miles) on the one-mile speedway.
STAGES: Stage 1 ends at Lap 45. Stage 2 ends at Lap 90.
TV/RADIO: FS1 will broadcast the race at 5:30 p.m. Its pre-race coverage begins at 5 p.m. … Motor Racing Network’s radio coverage begins at 5 p.m. and will stream at MRN.com; SiriusXM NASCAR Radio will carry the broadcast.
FORECAST: The wunderground.com forecast calls for mostly cloudy skies and a high of 61 degrees with a 5% chance of rain at race start.
LAST YEAR: Last March at Phoenix, Brandon Jones passed Kyle Busch for the lead with 20 laps to go and went on to win. In November’s season finale, Austin Cindric won in overtime to claim the Xfinity Series championship.
STARTING LINEUP: Phoenix Xfinity starting lineup