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Driving for Kyle Busch Puts More Pressure Than Jimmie Johnson or Joe Gibbs, Reveals John Hunter Nemechek

Gowtham Ramalingam

Driving for Kyle Busch Puts More Pressure Than Jimmie Johnson or Joe Gibbs, Reveals John Hunter Nemechek

John Hunter Nemechek is a driver with the unique experience of driving under some of the biggest stalwarts in NASCAR. Back when he was still a regular in the Craftsman Truck Series, he raced for Kyle Busch. He then transitioned to drive for Joe Gibbs in the Xfinity Series and currently pilots the #20 Toyota Camry XSE for Jimmie Johnson’s Legacy Motor Club.

In a recent interview with Fox Sports reporter Bob Pockrass, he spoke about this uniqueness and revealed under which of these leaders he faced the most pressure. “More pressure was driving for Kyle for sure,” he said. “Driving for KB was a lot of pressure to go out and succeed. Driving for Coach (Gibbs) was super special. Coach is more, I would say, a motivator and a coach in that aspect.”

He continued, “If things don’t quite go right, he (Gibbs) definitely knows what to say in those instances. We’re just getting into really our relationship driving for Jimmie and The King and Maury [Gallagher]. But overall, Jimmie has been great to work with.” Though the 7-time champion has struck a chord with Nemechek by being extremely supportive, the driver affirmed that Busch was the most demanding of them all.

Nemechek’s time with Busch came in the 2021 and 2022 Truck Series seasons when he drove the #4 truck for Kyle Busch Motorsports. He won 5 races in the 2021 season and was named the regular season champion. Talking about the potential of his promotion to a Cup Series ride back in 2023, Busch notably said that he had everything to make it to the top tier if he had $6 million. 

“It’s not a success game anymore, it’s a money game,” the former KBM owner quipped in an interview with Toby Christie. Fortunately, Nemechek was able to find that sponsorship with Jimmie Johnson.

How Jimmie Johnson and Co. is helping Nemechek become a better driver?

It would be a fair assessment to say that Nemechek has had a decent start to his 2024 Cup Series season. He has a couple of top-ten finishes and a few stage points. These results can only be expected to improve over the coming races owing to his talent and the “support” that he mentions as having at Legacy Motor Club. Apart from Johnson, he also has Matt Kenseth and Trevor Bayen as his driver coaches.

Talking of their involvement in perfecting his race craft, he told Pockrass, “Having Matt and Trevor as part of the fold, it’s been amazing. Matt was actually my ride up here to Martinsville. So that was nice. And Trevor, being able to work with him on a weekly basis has been amazing as well. I’m looking forward to continuing the relationship with those guys, and hopefully growing stronger every single week.” His next chance at impressing the tall giants that he is surrounded by will arrive on Sunday in Texas.

Post Edited By:Srijan Mandal

About the author

Gowtham Ramalingam

Gowtham Ramalingam

Gowtham is a NASCAR journalist at The SportsRush. Though his affinity for racing stems from Formula 1, he found himself drawn to NASCAR's unparalleled excitement over the years. As a result he has shared his insights and observations by authoring over 350 articles on the sport. An avid fiction writer, you can find him lost in imaginary worlds when he is not immersed in racing. He hopes to continue savoring the thrill of every lap and race together with his readers for as long as he can.

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