After seeing his recent momentum stalled during the final two laps at Talladega, Martin Truex Jr. is ready to resume where he left off before the folly at the Alabama superspeedway.
“We have to put Talladega behind us,” said the Furniture Row Racing driver. “We finished 27th there but could have easily had a top-five had it not been for those last two laps. All I care about right now is how to figure out the Martinsville short track.”
Truex, who had a 10.2 finishing average in the five races prior to Talladega, is one of many Sprint Cup Series drivers who are puzzled by the configuration of Martinsville’s .526-mile oval, site of Sunday’s Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500.
“Martinsville is a perplexing place,” said Truex. “It’s the simplest looking racetrack and you tell yourself ‘how hard can it be to get around there.’ It’s not hard to drive on, it’s just hard to race on.”
Truex, who has two top-fives and four top-10s in 17 Cup starts at Martinsville, is candid about his personal assessment of NASCAR’s shortest track.
“What you think you will need in the (Martinsville) race after three practice sessions seldom holds true,” explained Truex. “It seems like you’re always guessing on Sunday to try and get that right setup. There are some guys really good there. Once you crack the Martinsville code or find that niche you can make things happen. It seems like the same guys win over and over there. I just haven’t quite figured it out yet.”
With four races remaining in the demanding 36-race schedule, Truex and the single-car Furniture Row Racing team continue to have their eye on 2015.
“We made some good gains recently,” stated Truex. “We just need to close out the season with solid performances and good finishes, which would give all of us a morale lift during the offseason.”