Truex could write a fairy-tale ending
There was a time — it seems ages now — when Martin Truex Jr. was considered the nice kid on the block. You liked him, and you really didn’t think he had the temperament to beat you up and steal your lunch money.
Everybody may want to check their pockets.
Truex — a one-man wrecking crew for Furniture Row Racing — is crushing the opposition.
His victory at Dover on Sunday was his third in five races. He won two of the three races in the first round of the Chase elimination series.
He has five straight top 10s. And if not for a blinkof-an-eye pass at Daytona by Denny Hamlin, he would have won the season’s signature race.
“Think about his year!” NBC Sports NASCAR analyst Steve Letarte said. “Martin Truex Jr. right now needs to be absorbing every second of this. He was inches from winning the Daytona 500, dominates the Coca-Cola 600, wins the Southern 500, those are all the crown jewels.”
Is there a bigger one on the way, like a Cup title? He qualified for the final four last year in Homestead but came up short.
“I can’t even believe it, man — it’s just living a dream right now,” Truex said after winning in Dover. “It’s a fairy tale.”
Truex and his Chevy were beasts taming the Monster Mile, leading a race-high 187 laps. He won by almost eight seconds.
Onward to Charlotte this weekend. Did we mention he already has won there as well this season?
“We’re not messing around, I guess,” Truex said. Martin Truex Jr.’s victory Sunday at Dover was his second of the Chase. Chase tweaks? NASCAR traditionalists who long for the days when champions were decided on consistency may be in for some good news.
Steve O’Donnell, NASCAR executive vice president and chief racing development officer, said Monday on Sirius/XM NASCAR Radio that the points system could be in for some tweaks.
“One of the things we’re looking at is (in) the first 26 races, are there some additional things we could do for the winner of the regular season,” O’Donnell said.
Here we go again. NASCAR has tweaked the Chase format various times since its first incarnation in 2004. The current system allots berth to the top 16 drivers based on points, with an additional premium on victories that could bump someone into the top 16.
“That’s the beauty of this format,” O’Donnell said. “You have to be on top of your game.”