NASCAR Cup
NASCAR Cup
08 Feb
-
09 Feb
Event finished
08 Feb
-
17 Feb
Event finished
21 Feb
-
23 Feb
Race in
17 Hours
:
47 Minutes
:
31 Seconds
R
Fontana
28 Feb
-
01 Mar
Next event in
4 days
R
Phoenix
06 Mar
-
08 Mar
Next event in
11 days
R
Atlanta
13 Mar
-
15 Mar
Next event in
18 days
R
Homestead
20 Mar
-
22 Mar
Next event in
25 days
R
27 Mar
-
29 Mar
Next event in
32 days
R
Bristol
03 Apr
-
05 Apr
Next event in
39 days
R
Richmond
17 Apr
-
19 Apr
Next event in
53 days
R
Talladega
24 Apr
-
26 Apr
Next event in
60 days
R
01 May
-
03 May
Next event in
67 days
R
Martinsville
07 May
-
09 May
Next event in
73 days
R
All-Star
15 May
-
16 May
Next event in
81 days
R
Charlotte
22 May
-
24 May
Next event in
88 days
R
29 May
-
31 May
Next event in
95 days
R
Michigan
05 Jun
-
07 Jun
Next event in
102 days
R
12 Jun
-
14 Jun
Next event in
109 days
R
Chicagoland
19 Jun
-
21 Jun
Next event in
116 days
R
26 Jun
-
28 Jun
Next event in
123 days
R
Indianapolis
03 Jul
-
05 Jul
Next event in
130 days
R
Kentucky
09 Jul
-
11 Jul
Next event in
136 days
R
17 Jul
-
19 Jul
Next event in
144 days
R
Michigan II
07 Aug
-
09 Aug
Next event in
165 days
R
Watkins Glen
14 Aug
-
16 Aug
Next event in
172 days
R
Dover II
21 Aug
-
23 Aug
Next event in
179 days
R
Daytona II
27 Aug
-
29 Aug
Next event in
185 days
R
Darlington
04 Sep
-
06 Sep
Next event in
193 days
R
Richmond II
10 Sep
-
12 Sep
Next event in
199 days
R
Bristol II
17 Sep
-
19 Sep
Next event in
206 days
R
Las Vegas II
25 Sep
-
27 Sep
Next event in
214 days
R
Talladega II
02 Oct
-
04 Oct
Next event in
221 days
R
Charlotte II
09 Oct
-
11 Oct
Next event in
228 days
R
Kansas II
16 Oct
-
18 Oct
Next event in
235 days
R
Texas II
23 Oct
-
25 Oct
Next event in
242 days
R
Martinsville II
30 Oct
-
01 Nov
Next event in
249 days
R
Phoenix II
06 Nov
-
08 Nov
Next event in
256 days

How dominant is Martin Truex Jr.? Just look at the numbers

shares
comments
How dominant is Martin Truex Jr.? Just look at the numbers
By:
Jul 9, 2017, 10:45 PM

The strong playoff push for Martin Truex Jr. continues with a dominant victory at Kentucky Speedway.

Martin Truex Jr., Furniture Row Racing Toyota, Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, Kyle Larson, Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet
Martin Truex Jr., Furniture Row Racing Toyota, Matt DiBenedetto, Go Fas Racing Ford
Cole Pearn
Race winner Martin Truex Jr., Furniture Row Racing Toyota

When Martin Truex Jr. wins, he wins big.

The No. 78 Furniture Row Racing team’s victory at Kentucky Speedway on Saturday night marked its third of the season. For the second time this season, Truex swept all three stages on the way to his 10th career win. 

More important, Truex’s record-13th stage win increased his playoff points to 28 — 12 more than closest competitor Jimmie Johnson’s 16. 

Think about this: Truex has led more than twice as many laps (1,115) as 55 of his 57 fellow Monster Energy Cup Series competitors this season. With identical equipment, Truex has topped Kyle Busch’s 858-laps led. Points leader Kyle Larson is third on the list with 721 laps led at the point.  

And with his Kentucky win, his eighth since joining Furniture Row Racing in 2014, Truex trails Larson by just one point in the standings.

“I think he's peaking right now, and I think he's ‑‑ I've always thought ‑‑ for the last year I've thought he was as good as anyone in the garage. Now I think he's better than anyone in the garage,” team owner Barney Visser said. “You saw what he did on that last restart, putting it down in Turn 1. He's just that good.”

Truex led 145 circuits (on the way to a race-high 152), lapped all but eight cars and established more than a 15-second lead over the field before Kurt Busch’s engine blew to send the Quaker State 400 into overtime. The No. 78 car was one-third of a lap away from taking the white flag when NASCAR called the caution.

Crew chief Cole Pearn elected not to pit while the other seven lead-lap cars came down pit road. With a push from Larson, Truex shot to the front ahead of Kyle Busch and held on for the win.

In the five seasons prior to Truex's arrival, Furniture Row Racing had just one win and one playoff appearance. Now, the organization is a perennial NASCAR contender. In 126 races in the No. 78 car, Truex has scored five of his 12 poles, 23 of his 54 top fives and 56 of his 146 top 10s. 

Pearn feels that one of the keys to the team’s success in 2017 is Truex’s stellar qualifying effort. His average starting position of 7.9 this year is by far his best in 12 Cup seasons — and a remarkable improvement over his career average of 15.3.

“I think a lot of it comes down to qualifying well,” Pearn said. “I think if you look at our qualifying averages, we've been really stout that way. Definitely our best as a team. I think having good track position to start the race is a huge, important part of it, and you're able to maintain that, it makes it a lot easier to score stage points for sure. 

It was at Pearn’s urging that Visser took a shot on Truex. It's a move that has paid off everyone.

“Cole was part of the group that originally picked Martin when he became available,” Visser said. “He was the guy that Cole wanted, and (general manager) Joe (Garone) wanted him.  

“I think it helps Martin to know that these guys really wanted him, and obviously he's just blossomed here.”

Next article
Darrell Wallace Jr.: It was time "to make my splash" in Cup

Previous article

Darrell Wallace Jr.: It was time "to make my splash" in Cup

Next article

Send in your questions for the NASCAR Mailbag

Send in your questions for the NASCAR Mailbag
Load comments

About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Kentucky
Location Kentucky Speedway
Drivers Martin Truex Jr.
Teams Furniture Row Racing
Author Lee Spencer