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Martin Truex Jr. comes from the back to take dominant Dover win

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Martin Truex Jr. comes from the back to take dominant Dover win
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Martin Truex’s victory at Dover (Del.) International Speedway on Monday came a day late and required a long journey from the rear of the field.

Race Winner Martin Truex Jr., Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry Sirius XM
Race Winner Martin Truex Jr., Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry Sirius XM
Race Winner Martin Truex Jr., Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry Sirius XM
Race Winner Martin Truex Jr., Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry Sirius XM

With Sunday’s GanderRV 400 postponed due to rain, Truex still had to begin his journey on Monday from the rear of the field after his No. 19 Toyota failed pre-race inspection twice on Sunday.

It took him some time to make his way to the front of the field, but once he did, he never ventured far, winning Stage 2 and easily holding off Alex Bowman to pick up his second win of the 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season.

"Man, it feels incredible. I'm so thankful for this team. What a race car we had today," Truex said after the race. "We have one hell of a team. We came here with a new set-up this time because we kind of had an older set-up than had worked good for several years but it was't good enough.

"Thanks to all these fans that came out today, on a Monday. It's just awesome."

Reminded he started from the back of the field and ended up winning by more than nine seconds, Truex said, "I promise it wasn't easy. It was a lot of work, it was tough. This race car, man, it was just incredible.

"I can't believe if we'd have won at Talladega, we'd have three in a row. A new group of guys this year, Coach (Joe Gibbs) put together a good bunch with (crew chief) Cole (Pearn) and everybody. I'm just really, really proud."

The victory is the 21st of Truex’s career and his third at Dover. Coincidentally, his first career win came at Dover in 2007 in a race postponed until Monday.

Kyle Larson finished third, Kevin Harvick was fourth and Chase Elliott completed the top-five.

Rounding out the top-10 were Erik Jones, Joey Logano, William Byron, Clint Bowyer and Kyle Busch.

Busch is the only driver to finish in the top-10 in the first 11 races of the season, tying a record set in 1990 by Morgan Shepherd.

Stage 3

Following the break between Stages 2 and 3, all of the lead-lap cars elected to pit with Truex was the first off of pit road followed by Bowman, Harvick, Elliott and Brad Keselowski.

The race returned to green on Lap 250.

Kyle Busch tagged the wall on Lap 252 and immediately yelled, “We’ll be done. See you in a few laps,” over his team radio.

 

On Lap 265, Denny Hamlin spun on the track in Turn 2 after tagging the wall and having a tire go down. There was extensive damage to right-rear of his No. 11 Toyota. Only a handful of cars elected to pit.

On the restart on Lap 270, Truex remained in the lead, followed by Bowman, Elliott, Harvick and Ryan Blaney.

With 100 laps to go in the race, Harvick remained within a second of Truex. Bowman was third, Larson fourth and Elliott ran fifth.

A round of green-flag pit stops began on Lap 320 with Larson, Harvick and Truex among the first to make what could be their final stop for fuel and tires.

Ryan Preece was penalized for an uncontrolled tire during his stop and had to make a pass-thru penalty on pit road.

Daniel Suarez was the last of the cars to pit – and had the entire field at least one lap down at one point. Once he pit on Lap 347, Truex remained in the lead followed by Bowman, Larson and Harvick.

With 50 laps to go, Truex held a more than 3-second lead over Bowman with Larson in third, 4.5-seconds behind the leader.

Truex’s lead had grown to more almost 5 seconds over Bowman with 30 laps remaining. Larson was third and Harvick fourth.

With 10 laps to go, Truex’s lead had ballooned to more than 8 seconds over Bowman. Larson was third, Harvick fourth and Elliott fifth.

Bowman was not able to cut the margin any lower to Truex with five laps remaining.

Read Also:

Cla # Driver Manufacturer Laps Time Laps Led
1 19 United States Martin Truex Jr.  Toyota 400   132
2 88 United States Alex Bowman  Chevrolet 400 9.501 16
3 42 United States Kyle Larson  Chevrolet 400 13.046  
4 4 United States Kevin Harvick  Ford 400 13.313 1
5 9 United States Chase Elliott  Chevrolet 400 17.065 145
6 20 United States Erik Jones  Toyota 400 17.582  
7 22 United States Joey Logano  Ford 400 21.936 16
8 24 United States William Byron  Chevrolet 400 22.311 5
9 14 United States Clint Bowyer  Ford 400 22.748  
10 18 United States Kyle Busch  Toyota 400 23.332 1
11 41 Mexico Daniel Suarez  Ford 400 24.054 21
12 2 United States Brad Keselowski  Ford 399 1 lap 58
13 1 United States Kurt Busch  Chevrolet 399 1 lap  
14 48 United States Jimmie Johnson  Chevrolet 399 1 lap 4
15 12 United States Ryan Blaney  Ford 399 1 lap  
16 10 United States Aric Almirola  Ford 399 1 lap  
17 21 United States Paul Menard  Ford 399 1 lap  
18 6 United States Ryan Newman  Ford 398 2 laps  
19 3 United States Austin Dillon  Chevrolet 398 2 laps  
20 95 United States Matt DiBenedetto  Toyota 398 2 laps  
21 11 United States Denny Hamlin  Toyota 397 3 laps  
22 13 United States Ty Dillon  Chevrolet 397 3 laps  
23 37 United States Chris Buescher  Chevrolet 397 3 laps  
24 34 United States Michael McDowell  Ford 395 5 laps 1
25 8 United States Daniel Hemric  Chevrolet 394 6 laps  
26 38 United States David Ragan  Ford 393 7 laps  
27 43 United States Darrell Wallace Jr.  Chevrolet 393 7 laps  
28 47 United States Ryan Preece  Chevrolet 392 8 laps  
29 32 United States Corey Lajoie  Ford 392 8 laps  
30 15 United States Ross Chastain  Chevrolet 389 11 laps  
31 00 United States Landon Cassill  Chevrolet 389 11 laps  
32 36 United States Matt Tifft  Ford 387 12 laps  
33 17 United States Ricky Stenhouse Jr.  Ford 386 14 laps  
34 51 Cody Ware  Ford 383 17 laps  
35 27 United States Reed Sorenson  Chevrolet 356 43 laps  
36 77 United States Quin Houff  Chevrolet 168 231 laps  
37 52 United States B.J. McLeod  Chevrolet 96 303 laps  

Martin Truex Jr. snags Stage 2 win from Bowman at Dover

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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Dover
Author Jim Utter