After a Midas-like run in the first 15 races of this season, Martin Truex Jr. was brought back to reality over the last four races heading into Sunday’s Brickyard 400.
He finished a season-low 42nd after an early wreck at Sonoma, and then wrecked out again the next week at Daytona (finished 38th), dropping him from second to fifth in the Sprint Cup point standings.
Truex then finished 17th at Kentucky and was 12th last week at New Hampshire.
It’s been a rough month, no doubt.
But Truex battled back in Sunday’s Brickyard 400 to finish fourth, earning his best finish since Michigan (third) in mid-June.
“You always want to put yourself in position for a win at the end and that’s what we did today,” Truex said. “We fought hard and stayed patient all day.
“We got caught on pit road again when the caution came out, but fortunately we had enough time to get back to the front. We had good cars the past four races but had horrible luck. Today it came together and it’s a good feeling to regain momentum.”
It was Truex’s sixth top-five and 15th top-10 finish of the season.
Truex battled back from 25th place after pitting on green when a caution came out.
“The same thing happened to us last week in New Hampshire and I couldn’t believe it was happening again,” Truex said. “But having a fast car and good pit strategy by (crew chief Cole Pearn) brought us back to the front.
“When we made our last stop we were around three laps short on fuel, but a number of cautions came out late in the race, which took care of the fuel issue. We finally caught a break.”
Even with the strong finish, Truex remains in fifth place, 109 points behind series-leading Kevin Harvick. But Truex is looking forward to next Sunday’s race at Pocono, where he won last month.