Dominant Martin Truex Jr. Derailed by Loose Wheelby Kyle Pokrefky May 8, 2016 0 comments
KANSAS CITY, Kans. — A dominant run by Martin Truex Jr. in the Go Bowling 400 at Kansas Speedway came undone late in the 267-lap race on Saturday night.
Starting from the pole and leading a race-high 172 laps, Truex Jr.’s No. 78 Bass Pro Shops Toyota was sailing away to what would have been his first victory of the 2016 season.
Unfortunately for last year’s Championship Round Chase driver, a mechanical issue on a Lap 212 pit stop ended his hopes for the race win.
As Truex Jr. returned to the race track following what was to be his final pit stop of the race, he reported back to his Furniture Row Racing team that he was experiencing a loose wheel on his race car. Upon further inspection, the culprit for the issue was revealed to be a broken head bolt that was caught behind the right front wheel.
“I couldn’t believe it,” Truex Jr. said. “I went around Turns 1 and 2 and I was like ‘Wheel loose.’ I kept telling myself that maybe it’s not me, maybe it’s just shaking because it has tape on it or something stupid.
“It was loose and I knew it right away. Frustrating, but that’s how it goes.”
Truex Jr. went on to finish in the 14th position. Despite his disappointing Kansas result, Truex Jr. is remaining upbeat that his team will rebound and remain a contender in the weeks to come.
Entering next Sunday’s race at Dover International Speedway, Truex Jr. is sitting 11th in points off the strength of one top-five and four top-10 finishes.
“We’re going to win races for sure – if we keep bringing cars like that, we’re going to win some,” Truex Jr. continued. “It’s frustrating when you’ve had it happen so many times in your career.
“I swear, you watch guys win races that don’t have the fastest car or on fuel mileage and all this stuff and it’s like, ‘damn.’ Someday I’m going to get on one of those or on the other side of one of them. Usually you can dominate and win, but it’s tough and it happens.
“It’s part of racing. We’ll just move on to Dover next week, which is another good track for our Furniture Row Racing team.”
Photo Credit: Jamie Squire/Getty Images