Sunday, July 9, 2017

Truex Dominates in Kentucky

Originally written for CLNS Media.

Martin Truex Jr. dominated the Quaker State 400 from Kentucky Speedway on Saturday night to pick up his third win of the season.

Truex led a race-high 152 laps and won both stages on his way to victory lane.  Truex was leading when the caution came out with two laps to go, and he said he thought he was going to lose the race when he chose to stay out when the rest of the field pitted.
Robert Laberge/Getty Images

“I thought we were dead,” Truex said.  “Fortunately we were able to hold them off…and a good push from [Kyle] Larson helped us a bunch.”

While Truex was leading over a long green-flag run in the final 50 laps, he said he was waiting for the inevitable caution that would make the end interesting.

“I was worried every lap, just waiting for a caution,” Truex said.  “Especially at the end, you’re just counting them down.”

“It felt like we had a shot last year and it got away from us on fuel mileage.  I wanted to win so bad after that, so this is sweet redemption.”

Kyle Larson was not able to get through pre-qualifying inspection, so he had to start last on Saturday.  Larson rebounded to finish second, but he said an ill-timed speeding penalty on pit road may have had an effect on the final result.

“I felt like I had the second-best car today, and it would have been interesting to get a restart with him earlier,” Larson said.  “My speeding penalty there…I’m mad at myself for making that mistake.  I don’t really know if that affected the outcome, but you never know.”

Unofficial results:
1. Martin Truex Jr.
2. Kyle Larson
3. Chase Elliott
4. Denny Hamlin
5. Kyle Busch
6. Erik Jones
7. Jamie McMurray
8. Joey Logano
9. Kevin Harvick
10. Ryan Blaney
11. Darrell Wallace Jr.
12. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
13. Clint Bowyer
14. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
15. Danica Patrick
16. Chris Buescher
17. Matt Kenseth
18. Daniel Suarez
19. Austin Dillon
20. AJ Allmendinger
21. Paul Menard
22. Ryan Newman
23. Michael McDowell
24. David Ragan
25. Matt DiBenedetto
26. Landon Cassill
27. Ryan Sieg
28. Reed Sorenson
29. Jeffrey Earnhardt
30. Kurt Busch
31. Timmy Hill
32. BJ McLeod
33. Ty Dillon
34. Cole Whitt
35. Gray Gaulding
36. Joey Gase
37. Trevor Bayne
38. Kasey Kahne
39. Brad Keselowski
40. Jimmie Johnson

Sarah Crabill/Getty Images

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