Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Martin Truex Jr.

Martin Lee Truex, Jr. was born on June 29th of 1980 in Mayetta, Stafford Township, New Jersey. His father, Martin Sr., was a former race winner in the NASCAR Busch Grand National Division North (Camping World East) Series.

Martin began racing in the NASCAR Busch North (Camping World East) Series in 2000; from 2000 to 2004 with a family owned #56 SeaWatch Chevy Truex won 5 races, and 13 poles.

Truex made his first NASCAR Busch (Nationwide) Series start in 2001 at the Dover International Speedway in his father's #56 XST Paintable Silicon Chevy. He started 19th but finished 38th after an early wreck.

In 2002, Truex drove one Busch (Nationwide) race for Phoenix Racing at New Hampshire International Speedway, starting thirteenth and finishing twenty-ninth. He ran three races the rest of that season for his father, with a best finish of 17th at Dover.

In 2003, he began the season with his father's team, before he was hired by Dale Earnhardt, Jr. to drive his #81 Chance 2 Motorsports Chevy. He made his debut with Chance 2 at Richmond International Raceway, where he qualified sixth and led eleven laps before transmission failure forced him to a 31st place finish. He split time between Chance 2 and his father's team for the 10 races he ran that season, except at Dover, where he drove for Stanton Barrett.

Truex raced his first full season in NASCAR’s second-tier series for Chance 2 in 2004. He earned his very first victory at the Bristol Motor Speedway, and he would later add 3 more victories over the next 7 races. This would include a victory at Talladega Superspeedway which broke Dale Jr’s streak of winning restrictor plate races in the Busch (Nationwide) Series, and a victory at the final NASCAR event held at Nazareth Speedway. At the end of the season one race until the last Truex was already clinched for the championship. Total that year he raced 34 times and won 6 races with 26 top 10’s. Martin became only the second driver to Dale Earnhardt Jr. to win a championship in there rookie year. Truex made his NASCAR Winston (Sprint) Cup debut at Atlanta Motor Speedway In Dale Earnhardt Inc’s #1; he started 33rd and finished 37th.

Truex stayed in the Busch (Nationwide) Series to defend his championship in 2005, winning the title for the second season in a row over challenger Clint Bowyer. He won the first NASCAR Busch (Nationwide) Series point’s race held outside the United States, in Mexico, as well as defending his wins at Talladega and Dover. He took his first win at Daytona International Speedway on July 1, 2005. Truex Jr also finished second in the IROC standings.

In 2006, Truex moved to the #1 Bass Pro Shops, DEI Chevrolet full-time in the NEXTEL (Sprint) Cup Series. He had two top-five finishes and finished nineteenth in points as a rookie. He finished 3rd in the rookie of the year battle to two-time winner Denny Hamlin and second placer Clint Bowyer.

Truex got his first win of 2007 at the NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Open, securing a spot in the 2007 Nextel All-Star Challenge, where he finished 10th. A few weeks later, he won the Autism Speaks 400 scoring his first NEXTEL (Sprint) Cup Series win with an interval of seven seconds between himself and pole sitter Ryan Newman; he led over half of the race with 219 of 400 laps. Truex make it to the chase and finished 11th in the points with one win and 14 top tens.

In 2008 Martin was thought of as the head driver due to Dale Jr moving to Hendrick Motorsports. With that responsibility he went winless in 2008, but had eleven top-tens and finished 15th in points.

At the beginning of the 2009 season, his team, Dale Earnhardt, Inc. merged with Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates and was renamed Earnhardt Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates. Truex began the year by positively by winning the pole for the Daytona 500. 2009 would be his final season with Earnhardt Ganassi Racing.

At the conclusion of the 2009 season, Truex left Earnhardt Ganassi Racing and will drive the #56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota Camry for Michael Waltrip Racing, receiving owner points from the #55 car formerly driven by the semi-retired Waltrip.,_Jr.