Martin Truex Jr. was quiet on Sunday in Vegas. He finished ninth in Stage 1 and fourth in Stage 2. He failed to lead a single lap. But, he came away with a top five still in bringing his No. 19 Toyota home fourth. It was his seventh top eight result in his last nine Vegas starts, six of which now in the top four.
“We were right there in the hunt coming down after the last pit stop there under green,” Truexsaid. “We were third and we were tracking them down just a little bit at a time. Felt like we were maybe going to have a three-way race for the win and then that caution came out and put us all the way to the back.”
Truex, was still able to battle back for a top fiveas he said the key was pitting again for freshertires on that final stop.
“To be able to battle through that and ended up pitting again for tires because we weren’t going anywhere and restarted like 24th there on not the last caution, but the one before that,” Truex continued. “To be able to drive back up to fourth is really something. The Bass Pro Toyota was really strong tonight.”
Truex also noted that he was about a thirdplace car all evening, so he finished near wherehe should have anyways.
“We needed just a little bit to be as good as the 11 (Denny Hamlin) and maybe the 88 (Alex Bowman), but we were a third-place car, no question. Just missed it a tiny little bit. Decent night. Just needed a little bit more, but happy with the team and the job they’re doing. See what we can do next week at Talladega.”
On the season, Truex, has 10 top four finishes in his last 12 races run too. That has him +15 in the playoff standings heading to a track to where he’s only scored one top five at since 2007 and seven straight finishes of 20th or worse there too.