HICKORY, N.C. (July 29, 2019) – JR Motorsports driver Adam Lemke made a solid run over the final 30 laps of Saturday night’s 80-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Late Model event at Hickory Speedway, finishing a tick behind third-place Thomas Beane when the checkered flag waved.
The young California driver began the race from seventh position and, after qualifying in the heat of the day with a loose No. 98 Off-Axis Paint Chevrolet, knew that the venerable Hickory oval would tighten up considerably when it was cooler. That said, Lemke rolled under the green flag at the initial start knowing he would have to take some chances to move up the order before the cars began to string out.
The field got to single-file soon after the green waved to start the race, and Lemke had to catch and pass cars where he could find them. After advancing to fourth place with 30 laps remaining, Lemke set his sights on Beane’s third-place car and chewed a straightaway lead down to a couple of car lengths with 10 laps remaining in a caution-free race. With three laps remaining, Lemke was showing Beane the nose of his No. 98 Chevrolet and on the final lap, he sent it into Turn 1 on the inside and dug hard for the finish line.
The pair drove side-by-side for most of the final lap, with Lemke losing out by inches on a podium finish under the checkered flag. The finish was Lemke’s fifth top-five result in 11 races so far this season, and his eighth in the top 10.
Ryan Millington won the event, with Gage Painter second ahead of Beane and Lemke. Chris Hudspeth rounded out the top five.
Next action for the JR Motorsports Late Model team is Aug. 3 at Hickory in the annual CARS LMSC Throwback 276.
Adam Lemke, driver No. 98 Off-Axis Paint/JR Motorsports Chevrolet team
“The No. 98 Off-Axis/JR Motorsports Chevrolet was capable of winning tonight, but because everyone was so spread out and there were no cautions, there was never a real opportunity to catch them all. We needed a caution to get close and it didn’t happen. All in all, I think it was a great day of racing and we are ready for next weekend’s CARS Tour Throwback 276 here at Hickory.”