Martin Truex, Jr. goes back-[to-back at Sonoma!
Dominant in defense of last year’s victory in the Toyota/Save Mart 350, Martin Truex Jr. held off Kyle Busch, his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, to win Sunday’s Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series event at Sonoma Raceway.
With three-lap fresher tires after the final set of green-flag pit stops at the 2.52-mile road course—which for the first time since 1997 featured use of the carousel connecting Turns 4 and 7—Busch closed an 8.269-second gap to slightly more than a second over the last 24 laps.
But the driver of the No. 18 Toyota could get no closer, given that Truex’s No. 19 Camry had better drive off the corners at the 12-turn course and was able to keep Busch at bay. Truex led three times for 59 of the 90 laps, including the final 24.
“I just dug down deep and tried to be smooth and hit my marks,” said Truex, who won for the fourth time this season—all in the last eight races—the third time at Sonoma (including two straight, and with three different car owners) and the 23rd time in his career. “Luckily I began with a big enough gap where I could get away and not feel too much pressure.
“It was definitely a battle going on, as far as the race there at the end for us on tires. It felt terrible the last 20 laps. The last 10 it just felt like it was on ice—just no grip anywhere. I’m really proud of all these guys and everyone on this team and everyone back at JGR.
“What a season we’ve turned this into. This is great, man, unbelievable. Hopefully, we can keep it going.”
THE FRATERNAL ORDER OF THE GO FAST
This week Karen The Highly Opinionated Southern Belle and Edie The Las Vegas Super Star hit pay dirt with their selection of Martin Truex, Jr. for Sonoma! For their effort and support Truex paid them back with a nice 44 points addition to their second segment totals!
Picking the race winner at Sonoma has catapulted The Highly Opinionated One into sole control of the top of the leaderboard this week!
THE MOVERS AND SHAKERS
Following “the big two”, The Highly Opinionated One and The Vegas Super Star, on leaderboard this week Linda B. The Cookie Mom racked up a very nifty 39 points delivered by “Easy Money”, Kyle Larson.
There is a fivesome of players consisting of Jim, aka Chiefy, Carlton The Doorman, Linda R. the Lemonade Lefty, Amber The Extremely Lucky Cheddar Head, and Dan the Numbers Cruncher who all added 34 points their totals Sunday, whoever with three (3) different drivers! Which maybe a new record for this fantasy league! Chiefy and The Doorman were cheering on Kevin Harvick. But The Lemonade Lefty and The Numbers Dude were riding high with Aric Almirola, all the while The Cheddar Head was rolling along with Ryan Blaney this week. Nevertheless, these players all added 34 points to their totals at Sonoma.
Bernie The Bay Area Bandit (who is about to finish up her ancestral European tour) collected a much needed 29 points from Joey Logano’s outing at the road course.
Winding out the top five scorers this week is Leon Your Most Humble Sheriff. The Sheriff was the only player brave enough to hang out all day with Clint Bowyer. That in itself is a feat not many are willing to try on for size! But for that adventure he added 26 points to his bucket.
There was wide scale movement throughout the scoring pylon this week. The movement, in general, was just small in increments as opposed to huge shifts in everyone’s zip code! Just two of the players, The Cookie Mom and Blue Crush remained in their previous abodes this week.
However, having made that blanket statement above there was one player who was the anomaly, Edie The Las Vegas Super Star. The Vegas Super Star rocketed up the ladder five (5) places to stand in 5th place.
Jim, aka Chiefy was the second highest mover of the week stepping up three (3) positions after Sonoma to reside in 12th place.
There were six players who moved a total of two (2) markers this week. Those six players are Carlton The Doorman, Carole, aka Rudy, Bernie The Bay Area Bandit, Leon Your Most Humble Sheriff, Wild Bill The Pretzel Man, and David The Mudslinging Throttle Jockey. The Doorman moved up two spots to land in 8th place. The remaining five players all tumbled and fell two spots to not hang out in 9th, 10th, 11th, 15th and 18th, respectively.
The remaining seven players shifted one place up or down from their previous week’s address.
STRAIGHT FROM THE CRAPPER
This week Wild Bill The Pretzel Man gets the recognition as having “The Crappiest Pick of The Week”! Even though he racked up and kind of respectable score in most races, this week 17 points will allow you to take home that honor! Salute!
This week somebody finally evicted Amber The Extremely Lucky Cheddar Head from he comfortable digs. David the Mudslinging Throttle Jockey ousted the Cheddar Head from The Outhouse and most likely be turning this place into his “Man Cave”!.
ICYMI: Let it be noted that The Mudslinging Throttle Jockey may go fast on dirt, but he is definitely no stranger to The Outhouse. I haven’t been keeping the totals on who has occupied The Outhouse the longest or the most days, but he is most likely in the running for that stat!
Next week it is on to Chicagoland Speedway and Joliet, IL.
TIL NEXT TIME, PULL YOUR BELTS TIGHT AND LET’S GO RACING!