I spent a few minutes with Jeremy Clements Friday afternoon before the Nationwide Series race at Darlington Raceway. Arriving a few minutes early, I sat down to wait and noticed the crew working on his No. 51 Chevrolet in the garage. I was not surprised when one of the crew members turned out to be Jeremy.
When you drive for a family owned team, everyone has to do their part. Each week is a struggle. Winnings are usually poured right back into the car in a never ending battle to keep the car on the track every week.
Jeremy scored a ninth place finish at Talladega Superspeedway last Saturday, earning his first top-10 this season. It was a tremendous result for a team that prides itself on achieving the most with limited resources.
“It’s been a rough year,” he told me. “We’ve had motors fail and parts failures. We’ve been involved in wrecks where we got wrecked by another driver so it was good to go to Talladega and get a top ten. It made us remember how good it feels to get a good finish. It was an energy boost. It revitalized us.”
We continued the interview, talking about everything from racing to music to pets and more.
Do you prefer old school or new school racing?
“I’m a dirt track driver. I come from the dirt late model world. I like the short tracks like Bristol and Richmond. I love Darlington so I’d say old school for sure.”
Are you a cat person or dog person?
“Definitely dogs; I’ve always had a dog. I have a cocker spaniel named Abbey right now. She’s nine years old.”
Do you listen to country music or rock and roll?
“Rock and roll; I’m not a country man at all, don’t really like it. I’m a hard rock guy. I like Evans Blue, Three Days Grace, Pop Evil, stuff like that.”
Would you rather go hunting or fishing?
“I’m not into hunting and I haven’t fished in years. I don’t have one particular hobby. I like all kinds of things. I like movies and I like playing sports. I’m pretty good at basketball; anything active. I love going to the lake and getting on the tube and the Jet Ski. I love going to amusement parks and riding roller coasters.”
Would you rather go to the beach or to the mountains?
“I like both. I went to the mountains this past year in October and then went on a cruise in January. We went to the beaches at some of the islands we stopped at. I love them both.”
I couldn’t believe he didn’t have a preference so he finally went with “beach in the summertime and mountains in winter.”
Do you prefer football, basketball or baseball?
“I keep up with football and basketball more than I do baseball but I love going to a baseball game. I’ve been to see the Cardinals, in St. Louis, the Chicago Cubs, the Chicago White Sox and the Atlanta Braves. I love going to baseball games lives but don’t really like watching it on TV. I keep up with football, mostly professional. But being from South Carolina I keep up with Clemson and the Gamecocks but I’m more of a Tigers fan.”
My last question brought us back to racing.
What has been the proudest moment of your career?
“I look back to when I raced ARCA and we won at Nashville and absolutely dominated the race. We beat a lot of top notch teams like Ganassi and Roush. That was really fulfilling for me. There were only four guys on the crew that weekend, including myself, and knowing what we did it with, which was barely nothing; it was cool.”
Be sure to like the Jeremy Clements Racing Facebook page and follow them on Twitter @JCR_Clements51 for a chance to win the ‘Fan of the Week’ contest. The winner will have their name displayed on his car in the next race. The contest alternates each week between Facebook and Twitter.