Daniel Hemric will contest the majority of the 2020 NASCAR Xfinity Series schedule for JR Motorsports.
Hemric, who ran full-time in the Xfinity Series in 2017-18, will be one of three drivers splitting time in the No. 8 Chevrolet. He is scheduled to be behind the wheel for 21 of the season’s 33 races.
“Daniel is a solid competitor with a great personality,” said Dale Earnhardt Jr. “He’ll be a quality addition to our lineup in 2020. We’re lucky to have him. I feel like he has grown as a driver from his time in the Cup Series. That will be valuable to him with this new opportunity to compete in the Xfinity Series. He’s a local Kannapolis (N.C.) native with a lot of determination to succeed, and I’m excited to work with him.”
Richard Childress Racing announced in September that it is releasing Hemric at the end of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season. Hemric leads Ryan Preece by 10 points in the Rookie of the Year standings going into the season finale this weekend.
Asked about his future after the news of his impending release, Hemric told reporters that he wouldn’t be opposed to returning to the other NASCAR divisions. The 28-year-old admitted maybe it’s time to “rebuild that stock” as he still seeks a NASCAR national series win.
“Having Daniel on board with our No. 8 team really solidifies things for JRM in 2020,” said Kelley Earnhardt Miller, the general manager of JRM. “It puts the team in a healthy place with four cars running for a championship again, and we can’t wait to see how Daniel will perform next year. We have a ton of confidence in him and in the company’s direction.”
Hemric has 39 top-10 finishes from 66 Xfinity Series starts, and he advanced to the Championship 4 in both of his two full-time seasons.
“I want to thank Dale, Kelley and everyone at JR Motorsports for believing in me,” said Hemric. “For a Kannapolis boy like me, driving for the Earnhardt family is pretty awesome. My goal here is simple – to go win races for JR Motorsports and to help their program in any way that I can. I’ve raced against their cars before and I know how they’re capable of running. My focus is on finishing the Cup season out strong, but once the checkered flag flies at Homestead, we’ll set our sights on getting the No. 8 car to victory lane early and often next season.”
Earnhardt, meanwhile, will also make a lone start in the series next year. Since retiring from full-time Cup Series competition in 2017, he has made select Xfinity Series starts with the backing of Hellmann’s.
Also returning to the No. 8 car next year will be Jeb Burton, who will make his seventh start of the season for JRM this weekend. Next season, Burton will compete in 11 races with the team.
Sponsor details and race schedules were not announced.