Truex triumphs at Phoenix for first NASCAR Cup win in 28 starts

Martin Truex Jr overcame a rough start to win his first NASCAR Cup race in 28 starts, triumphing at Phoenix Raceway.

Truex triumphs at Phoenix for first NASCAR Cup win in 28 starts

Having last claimed victory at Martinsville back in June, Truex fought off Joey Logano, who was first off pitroad in the race’s final pitstops, but on a restart with 25 laps remaining Truex powered around the outside of Logano and grabbed the lead through Turns 1 and 2.

The race remained caution-free from there and Truex held off Logano by 1.698 seconds at the finish, marking Truex's first win at Phoenix.

Denny Hamlin ended up third ahead of Brad Keselowski in fourth and Chase Elliott in fifth. Completing the top-10 were Kevin Harvick, Kyle Larson, William Byron, Christopher Bell and Ryan Blaney.

Truex had a difficult start in the first stage, at one point tagging the wall and picking up some right-side damage to see him fall back through the field.

By the end of Stage 2, Truex was already back up front contending with Logano for the stage victory, while Aric Almirola, Elliott and Ross Chastain were all penalised for speeding on pitroad and had to restart from the rear of the field.

On lap 225, Truex passed Logano after methodically running him down for several laps, taking the lead for the first time in the race.

With 75 laps remaining in the race, Truex had opened up a two-second lead over Logano with Hamlin in third.

Brad Keselowski, Team Penske, Ford Mustang

Brad Keselowski, Team Penske, Ford Mustang

Photo by: NASCAR Media

Byron was the first of the lead-lap cars on lap 250 to start the final round of green-flag pitstops to take new tyres and fuel. Once the cycle of stops was completed on lap 255, Truex cycled back into the lead followed by Larson, Hamlin, Logano and Keselowski.

But on lap 262, Tyler Reddick hit the Turn 2 wall and dropped debris on the track which brought out the sixth caution of the race to see most of the lead-lap cars pit, as Bubba Wallace stayed out to inherit the lead.

When the race returned to green on lap 269, Wallace was followed by Logano, Keselowski, Truex and Larson, with Keselowski going three-wide on the restart to move into the lead heading into Turn 1, only for Logano to fight back on lap 274.

The race was interrupted again when Kyle Busch spun off Turn 4 on lap 283 to bring out a caution.

All lead-lap cars elected to pit with Logano once again the first off pitroad and when the race returned to green on lap 288 Logano was followed by Truex, who powered around the outside at Turn 2 to retake the lead and hold on for victory.

Cla # Driver Manufacturer Laps Time Gap Interval Laps Led
1 19 United States Martin Truex Jr. Toyota 312 3:00'20.633     64
2 22 United States Joey Logano Ford 312 3:00'22.331 1.698 1.698 143
3 11 United States Denny Hamlin Toyota 312 3:00'22.794 2.161 0.463 33
4 2 United States Brad Keselowski Ford 312 3:00'25.119 4.486 2.325 19
5 9 United States Chase Elliott Chevrolet 312 3:00'25.861 5.228 0.742  
6 4 United States Kevin Harvick Ford 312 3:00'26.604 5.971 0.743  
7 5 United States Kyle Larson Chevrolet 312 3:00'28.847 8.214 2.243 1
8 24 United States William Byron Chevrolet 312 3:00'29.461 8.828 0.614  
9 20 United States Christopher Bell Toyota 312 3:00'29.570 8.937 0.109  
10 12 United States Ryan Blaney Ford 312 3:00'30.070 9.437 0.500 35
11 10 United States Aric Almirola Ford 312 3:00'30.218 9.585 0.148  
12 47 United States Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Chevrolet 312 3:00'30.846 10.213 0.628 1
13 48 United States Alex Bowman Chevrolet 312 3:00'31.275 10.642 0.429  
14 21 United States Matt DiBenedetto Ford 312 3:00'31.752 11.119 0.477  
15 1 United States Kurt Busch Chevrolet 312 3:00'32.804 12.171 1.052  
16 23 United States Bubba Wallace Toyota 312 3:00'33.547 12.914 0.743 4
17 3 United States Austin Dillon Chevrolet 312 3:00'33.848 13.215 0.301  
18 17 United States Chris Buescher Ford 312 3:00'34.989 14.356 1.141  
19 42 United States Ross Chastain Chevrolet 312 3:00'36.041 15.408 1.052  
20 43 United States Erik Jones Chevrolet 312 3:00'36.501 15.868 0.460  
21 99 Mexico Daniel Suarez Chevrolet 312 3:00'37.363 16.730 0.862  
22 14 United States Chase Briscoe Ford 312 3:00'38.134 17.501 0.771  
23 34 United States Michael McDowell Ford 312 3:00'40.957 20.324 2.823  
24 77 United States Justin Haley Chevrolet 312 3:00'45.547 24.914 4.590  
25 18 United States Kyle Busch Toyota 311 3:00'35.358 1 Lap 1 Lap  
26 37 United States Ryan Preece Chevrolet 311 3:00'39.015 1 Lap 3.657  
27 7 United States Corey Lajoie Chevrolet 311 3:00'44.249 1 Lap 5.234 12
28 6 United States Ryan Newman Ford 311 3:00'49.366 1 Lap 5.117  
29 8 United States Tyler Reddick Chevrolet 310 3:00'43.399 2 Laps 1 Lap  
30 78 United States B.J. McLeod Ford 309 3:00'21.762 3 Laps 1 Lap  
31 41 United States Cole Custer Ford 308 3:00'24.005 4 Laps 1 Lap  
32 00 United States Quin Houff Chevrolet 305 3:00'36.437 7 Laps 3 Laps  
33 15 Australia James Davison Chevrolet 303 3:00'30.050 9 Laps 2 Laps  
34 53 United States Garrett Smithley Chevrolet 300 3:00'43.613 12 Laps 3 Laps  
35 52 United States Josh Bilicki Ford 258 2:39'31.744 54 Laps 42 Laps  
36 51 United States Cody Ware Chevrolet 101 1:07'03.174 211 Laps 157 Laps  
37 38 Anthony Alfredo Ford 87 53'47.511 225 Laps 14 Laps  
38 66 United States Timmy Hill Toyota 15 7'17.984 297 Laps 72 Laps  

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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Phoenix
Drivers Martin Truex Jr.
Teams Joe Gibbs Racing
Author Jim Utter