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Martin Truex Jr. Earns Emotional Win At Pocono Raceway, Ending 69-Race Winless Streak

Martin Truex Jr. Earns Emotional Win At Pocono Raceway, Ending 69-Race Winless Streak

by June 7, 2015 0 comments

Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/Getty Images

LONG POND, Pa. – On Sunday at Pocono Raceway, Martin Truex Jr. drove the Furniture Row Racing No. 78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet SS to victory in the Axalta ‘We Paint Winners’ 400, ending a 69-race winless streak in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

The last time the black No. 78 Chevrolet visited Victory Lane was at Darlington Raceway back in 2011 when Regan Smith won the Southern 500, and the last time Martin Truex Jr. won a race dates back to June of 2013 when he won at Sonoma Raceway. Heading into this weekend’s race, Truex Jr.’s best finish at the speedway was third. However, on Sunday, Truex Jr. absolutely dominated, leading 97 of the 160 laps, holding off Stewart-Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick in the closing laps. With the win, the team has now earned a spot in this year’s Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.

“Well we finally got it,” Truex Jr. said. “That is all I can say we finally got it. We have had a good run. We have had a great season. We have had everything it has taken to win races we just hadn’t got it done yet. I felt like we had the best car a few times today. I’m not sure we were. The No. 4 (Kevin Harvick) was really good at times and we were really good. It just takes a lot of things to go your way to pull these things together. Just can’t thank all my guys enough, Barney Visser, everybody at Furniture Row, everybody back in Denver for working so hard. This is a brand new race car and they have been working really hard lately. Just proud of them and thankful to drive great race cars.”

Furniture Row Racing has a technical alliance with Richard Childress Racing, but the small team is based out of Denver, Colorado, adding to the challenge of competing on the sport’s biggest stage. Impressively, the team currently sits second in the point standings, just 39 back from, well, Kevin Harvick who he held off for Sunday’s victory. Out of the 14 races this season, Martin Truex Jr. has amassed four top-five and 13 top-10 finishes. The only finish outside of top-10 this season came at Bristol Motor Speedway back in April when he finished 29th.

“We’ve went head-to-head with the big guys, the 48 (Jimmie Johnson) and the 4, who have been the guys to beat for a year and a half,” Truex Jr. said. “The 48 has been the guy to beat for seven, eight years. We’ve been right there with them, toe-to-toe. I think we’re still growing. We’re still getting better. I’m just excited to be a part of it, to see what we can do. I know we’re going to work hard, as hard or harder than anybody out there. It’s pretty cool to see what a single-car team from Denver is doing, and it’s awesome to be a part of that.”

Although it appears Martin Truex Jr. and all of the employees at Furniture Row Racing are on a roll and are Chase ready, the season hasn’t be the smoothest away from the track. Martin Truex Jr.’s girlfriend, Sherry Pollex has been battling ovarian cancer, and earlier this week, his grandmother passed away. Any time a family is faced with health challenges it’s a tough situation, but with Truex Jr.’s hectic traveling schedule and being away from home days at a time, it can be even tougher. One of the first to greet Truex Jr. in Victory Lane on Sunday was his girlfriend, Sherry.

“She (Sherry Pollex) showed me what she was made of, and I was like, wow, if she can do that, I can do this,” Truex Jr. said when referring to Pollex’s fight to overcome cancer. “This is easy. Honestly, just learned a lot from her and worked hard, never gave up, believed in myself the whole time, and that’s what it takes.”

The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series will visit Michigan International Speedway on Sunday, June 14 for the Quicken Loans 400. Coverage of the event will air live on FOX Sports 1 and the Motor Racing Network (MRN) at 1 p.m. ET.

Axalta ‘We Paint Winners’ 400 Results:

1.) #78 Martin Truex Jr.

2.) #4 Kevin Harvick

3.) #48 Jimmie Johnson

4.) #22 Joey Logano

5.) #41 Kurt Busch

6.) #20 Matt Kenseth

7.) #1 Jamie McMurray

8.) #42 Kyle Larson

9.) #18 Kyle Busch

10.) #11 Denny Hamlin

11.) #88 Dale Earnhardt Jr.

12.) #16 Greg Biffle

13.) #5 Kasey Kahne

14.) #24 Jeff Gordon

15.) #19 Carl Edwards

16.) #13 Casey Mears

17.) #2 Brad Keselowski

18.) #33 Ty Dillon

19.) #3 Austin Dillon

20.) #51 Justin Allgaier

21.) #14 Tony Stewart

22.) #15 Clint Bowyer

23.) #55 David Ragan

24.) #6 Trevor Bayne

25.) #40 Landon Cassill

26.) #7 Alex Bowman

27.) #38 David Gilliland

28.) #35 Cole Whitt

29.) #98 Josh Wise

30.) #34 Brett Moffitt

31.) #27 Paul Menard

32.) #83 Matt DiBenedetto

33.) #26 Jeb Burton

34.) #46 Michael Annett

35.) #32 Travis Kvapil

36.) #23 JJ Yeley

37.) #10 Danica Patrick

38.) #47 AJ Allmendinger

39.) #31 Ryan Newman

40.) #62 Brendan Gaughan

41.) #9 Sam Hornish Jr.

42.) #17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

43.) #43 Aric Almirola

 

NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Top-16 Point Standings:

1.) #4 Kevin Harvick

2.) #78 Martin Truex Jr. -39

3.) #48 Jimmie Johnson -78

4.) #22 Joey Logano -79

5.) #88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. -94

6.) #2 Brad Keselowski -118

7.) #1 Jamie McMurray -132

8.) #5 Kasey Kahne -142

9.) #20 Matt Kenseth -144

10.) #24 Jeff Gordon -148

11.) #27 Paul Menard -174

12.) #41 Kurt Busch -180

13.) #11 Denny Hamlin -180

14.) #43 Aric Almirola -180

15.) #31 Ryan Newman -185

16.) #19 Carl Edwards -191

Hunter Thomas
Hunter Thomas is a journalist who grew up in Darlington, S.C. His first motorsports-based endeavor was working as the Public Relations Director at Dillon Motor Speedway in Dillon, S.C., and his journalism start came while he was freelancing at his hometown newspaper, the News & Press while in college.

Hunter has been working within the NASCAR industry since 2010, and throughout the years, he has done everything from PR/Marketing for drivers and teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, to working at Rockingham Speedway. As a journalist, Hunter has covered everything from regional short tracks to NASCAR, ARCA Racing Series, World of Outlaws, Red Bull Global Rallycross, NHRA and much more.

Follow Hunter Thomas on Twitter by following, @HunterThomas08

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