Martin Truex Jr. continues bittersweet season
Martin Truex Jr. celebrates his dominant season in calm reflection, and with purpose.
He drives on for himself and his team, of course, but there is an important passenger who is always with him, whether he feels her physical touch.
Sherry Pollex didn’t get to hug her fiancé at Victory Lane last Saturday night at Kentucky when Truex won his third race of the season, tying him for season-best with Jimmie Johnson and leaving Truex one point behind standings leader Kyle Larson.
Pollex was in a hospital, recovering from surgery for a recurrence of her ovarian cancer. She tweeted her congratulations from a hospital bed, where she was celebrating with her family.
“Family selfie from my hospital room!!! Wahoo!!! GO MTJ!! #NeverGiveUp,” Pollex wrote.
Pollex, 38, was diagnosed with Stage III ovarian cancer in August 2014 and underwent radical surgery that included removal of her ovaries, spleen, appendix, Fallopian tubes and part of her stomach. After eight days in the hospital, she began weekly chemotherapy treatments.
Although Pollex rang the bell to celebrate completing her chemotherapy regimen in January 2016, it unfortunately is not surprising that she is once again battling the disease, which has an 85 per cent recurrence rate.
“Thank you for all the well wishes. I’ll be back at the track soon,” Pollex tweeted after the race.
Truex made sure to send Sherry a shout-out during a media victory session.
“I got to say hi to Sherry back home,” he said. “She didn’t make it this weekend, so, ‘I love you babe.’ And all these awesome fans, thank you guys so much for coming out. What an awesome crowd. I hope they enjoyed it and that was a whole lot of fun.”
Later on, he elaborated on the circumstances. “We found out a while ago about (the recurrence),” Truex said Saturday night in a TV interview with the NBC NASCAR crew. “She went in this weekend to have some surgery done. Everything went perfectly good, went as planned. I’m going to bring her home tomorrow. Excited to get home and see her, and everything is going great.”
By Sunday evening, Pollex tweeted a Vine of Truex pushing her in a wheelchair as the couple was leaving the hospital.
Truex is having a career year and seems prepped to make another Final Four championship run later in Homestead. But it all circles back to Pollex. “Sherry is everything to me,” Truex said on NBC. “We do everything together. She’s my best friend.
“I’m so proud of the person she is and what’s she been through and the inspiration she’s been to so many people including myself,” he added. Kenseth out Joe Gibbs Racing announced Tuesday that Erik Jones will drive its No. 20 Toyota next season, replacing Matt Kenseth, who had held that seat since 2013 but whose contract expires with this season.
Kenseth, 45, won the Cup season title in 2003, has six Top 10 finishes this season and is listed 16th in the standings. Jones, 21, has five Top 10s and is in 18th but also on a one-year loaner contract to Gibbs’ sister team Furniture Row Racing, and Gibbs needed a spot for Jones in 2018.