Martin Truex, Jr., No. 1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Monte Carlo SS - Finished Second HOW WAS YOUR RUN? "Well, it was a great finish. They started off with. obviously we had to go to the back because we changed engines after happy hour and...
Martin Truex, Jr., No. 1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Monte Carlo SS - Finished Second
HOW WAS YOUR RUN?
"Well, it was a great finish. They started off with. obviously we had to go to the back because we changed engines after happy hour and so a little disappointed in that but the car was real good right from the start. We drove up through the field pretty easily and once we got up in the top 15 or so we kind of started to lose progress. We got to about eighth on our last pit stop under green and I lost the clutch. So when I put the car in gear it just stalled out and we went from eighth to 15th or 16th on that green-flag stop. That was a no-brainer for us after that to stay out. That was the best our car had been all day long. Our lap times were consistently faster than the leader right before that caution where we stayed out so we figured, 'hey, what the heck, we'll get some clean air and keep our car up front and we should be in good shape'. So it was a great run. (Crew chief) Bono (Manion) and all the guys did a good job for me. Stayed calm and worked hard all weekend and we got to the front just in the nick of time."
WAS IT WEIRD DOING THIS ON A TUESDAY?
"Yeah, a little weird but heck, I'd race any day of the week, it's just a matter of it was pretty boring the last two days sitting around. I felt pretty useless sitting in the bus for however many hours it was. But glad to get it in. Glad to see that we still had some fans stick around and it ended up being a pretty good race."
ANY RELIEF ROM THE PRESSURE WITH THE CHASE COMING UP?
"It feels good to get a good finish. Obviously we had a shot at the win today and that felt good. That's what we're here to do but we're not in the clear yet. We've still got Bristol next week and I think if we can get through Bristol with a decent day without any troubles we'll be in great shape. We run very well at California and Richmond so I look forward to them. Just need to get through Bristol and hopefully we can continue and have good runs."
WERE YOU PLANNING ON STOPPING AFTER YOUR CLUTCH FAILED?
"Actually, when the clutch went out, we lost a bunch of spots which I was pretty mad about but I was actually hoping at the time that it would just stay green so we wouldn't have to worry about pitting or anything and we would have finished 13th or 14th, wherever it was that we were running. It would have saved us a lot of trouble if we had to pit or something happened. I wasn't praying for a caution at all; we ended up getting one and it worked out for us. It's just weird. It's hard to tell exactly what you have when you get back in traffic but right before we stayed out, like I said, we had the car really good, I thought. Bono said my lap times were as quick as the leaders or quicker so it was a pretty easy decision for us, really."
DOES IT FEEL GOOD OR IS IT FRUSTRATING TO FINISH SECOND HERE TWO TIMES IN A ROW?
"Both, it feels good at the same time it's so close. Man, I wanted it so bad I could taste it back there behind Kurt. I could catch him a little and I'd get right there and lose a little too. It was a good day. Both times we had to come from the back. Last time we were here we got spun out and had to come from the rear once and so second was a great finish for that day but I felt like the last time we probably had the car to beat. This time we didn't. This time we just had good strategy and a good car at the end. Heck, I'd finish second every week if I had to."
ON BATTLING KURT BUSCH AND HIS TEAMMATE FOR A SPOT IN THE CHASE AND HOW ALL THREE ARE RUNNING WELL AND IF THAT'S FRUSTRATING:
"Yeah, it's kind of odd. You think second is a good day but the guy that you're racing finishes ahead of you so it's just like at Pocono when Junior finished second to Kurt so the 2 is on their game right now. For sure we can't afford any mistakes and it will be kind of odd that we'll have to race the 8 for the last spot maybe but it is what it is and we're looking forward to it."
ON BATTLING KURT AT THE END AND IF THE POINT SITUATION IS ON HIS MIND AT THAT POINT OR IF HE'S ALL IN THE MOMENT:
"If I could have got closer to him I'd have thought about. I was real safe where I was the way I was running the car. I was driving it as hard as I could but knowing that I needed to finish the race, that was obviously in the back of mind. But I was going as hard as I could go without risking anything."
HOW MUCH DOES COMING BACK AND RACING TWO DAYS LATER PLAY ON THE MENTAL PART OF THE GAME?
"It's not difficult. Once you're here at the race track and you go through practice and qualifying you get ready to race, you're in the mindset, you've got your car where you want it, you know exactly what you've got for that. It doesn't matter if it's two hours or two weeks, you could get right in there and just go so it's not a matter of being prepared or being mentally ready, it's just a matter of a lot of sitting around. You get awfully bored."
WHAT DID YOU DO TO KEEP YOURSELF BUSY?
"I didn't do anything. I went to the movies last night. I went and saw I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry. It was good, not quite as good as I thought it would be but it was good."
-credit: gm racing