Super Late Model stars poised for NASCAR, rare opportunities for Short Track trophies

Matt Weaver

As the current crop of Super Late Model stars climb up the NASCAR ladder system, their opportunities to compete in races like the All-American 400 become more slim. It makes scoring a victory on Saturday all the more important.

NASHVILLE -- Super Late Model racing has experienced a return to popularity in recent seasons and the discipline has started to send its best to ARCA and NASCAR as a result.

Daniel Hemric and Kyle Benjamin are amongst the first of this current generation to come out of Super Late Model racing and the two have started leaving their mark on the NASCAR and ARCA worlds respectively.

Hemric made his NASCAR Truck Series debut last weekend at Martinsville Speedway and appears set for a follow-up next weekend at Phoenix International Raceway. Benjamin has made eight starts in the ARCA Racing Series, winning twice and recently made his first start in the NASCAR Pro Series at Dover and finished third for Ken Schrader Racing.

With both of their NASCAR careers blooming, the next few seasons may provide some of their final opportunities to chase some of the more prestigious Super Late Model victories, like the All-American 400 on Saturday, the World Crown 300 and Winchester 400.

And while the short track races provide a fun alternative to the business-like approach of NASCAR and ARCA, winning races like Saturday's All-American 400 remains a big deal.

"It's really important that we go out and pick up these wins," Benjamin told SB Nation on Friday. "We're here to have fun. You don't get many opportunities in racing, whether it's NASCAR or ARCA or whatever.

"I think we have a good car for this weekend -- and knowing that will make it even more fun."

Hemric feels honored to even have a shot at NASCAR racing and wants to make the most of these Late Model starts while he can.

"Whether it's racing go karts or the Snowball Derby, you want to win," Hemric said. "Anytime you're there, you want to take the trophies home. But as our ladder progresses, the chances do become more slim and we want to make the most of them in these Super Late Model races."

In other words, enjoy drivers like Chase Elliott, John Hunter Nemechek, Benjamin and Hemric while you can.

Complete All-American 400 coverage can be found on SB Nation's Ranting and Raving Short Track Blog.

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