News Truex Jr. comes 2 laps short in bid for 3rd Kansas win

11:35  13 may  2018
11:35  13 may  2018 Source:   nbcsports.com

Kevin Harvick: “We’re better than Truex” on 1.5-mile tracks

  Kevin Harvick: “We’re better than Truex” on 1.5-mile tracks Stewart-Haas Racing driver says his team has surpassed last year's series champion, who set a record in 2017 for 1.5-mile victories.So does Harvick feel his No. 4 Ford is right with Truex’s No. 78 Toyota (which notched a record seven wins on 1.

The next 2 points races will be on 1.5-mile tracks in Kansas and Charlotte. Last year in winning the championship, Martin Truex Jr . made a living on those tracks, winning 7 of the 11 races with more than 1,100 laps led.

Last year Martin Truex Jr . swept both Kansas race victories en route to the Radio: MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. Distance: 400 miles (400 laps ); Stage 1 (Ends on lap 80) Truex swept the 2017 races at Kansas . He, Matt Kenseth and Jeff Gordon are the only drivers to win consecutive races.

Video by Fox Sports

It was a familiar sight in the closing laps of the Saturday night’s Cup race at Kansas Speedway.

Martin Truex Jr.‘s No. 78 Toyota leading the field, seemingly on his way to another win on a 1.5-mile track.

“I thought with five to go were going to be in good shape,” Truex said.

Then “the switch flipped.”

“I got tight and started shaking the right front tire and I knew I was in trouble,” Truex said.

Very quickly, the No. 4 Ford of Kevin Harvick bore down on him.

Kyle Larson moving on from Bristol finish, looking to win again at Richmond

  Kyle Larson moving on from Bristol finish, looking to win again at Richmond Kyle Larson seeks to score his second consecutive Richmond Cup victory tonight.After losing the lead with six laps to go and finishing second to Kyle Busch at Bristol, a frustrated Kyle Larson headed back to his motorhome.

Martin Truex Jr . holds on for Kansas win ; Round of 8 set. Brett Moffitt’s crash into the Turn 2 wall with four laps left in Stage 2 kept him on the lead circuit after the other contending cars had come to pit road for green-flag stops.

— Martin Truex Jr . finally ended his Kansas hex. Truex streaked away on the final restart with two laps left in Saturday night’s Go Bowling 400 to win his first Monster Series leader Kyle Larson came home sixth. “It feels great,” Truex said. “It’s definitely been a thorn in our side. That’s for sure.

“We had been so tight all night and I didn’t know where to go once he was getting there,” Truex told Fox Sports 1. “If I go to the top, he’s just going to catch me on the bottom. I might as well run where I feel I can run the fastest, and I did and it just wasn’t enough.”

On four fresher tires, Harvick took the lead and led the final two laps.

Last year, on his way to winning the title, Truex won a series-record seven races at 1.5-mile tracks. But the tide began to shift in November at Texas Motor Speedway when Harvick passed Truex with 10 laps to go and claimed the win.

Since then, Harvick’s won four of six races on 1.5-mile tracks.

“We’re going to have to find something,” Truex said in his post-race conference. “We’re going to have to find some speed, and I think our cars are capable.  We’ve had good speed throughout the season at points.  We just haven’t been as consistent as last year in finding it.  I feel like the box for us is a little bit smaller.

Martin Truex Jr. thinks his luck is about to turn around

  Martin Truex Jr. thinks his luck is about to turn around Martin Truex is going through his worst patch of finishes since early in 2016, but history suggests that things are about to turn around.Truex sustained crash damage in three of the last four races (Texas Motor Speedway, Bristol Motor Speedway, and Talladega) and had a problem in the pits at Richmond Raceway.

Martin Truex Jr . wins at Fontana as Kevin Harvick's bid for four in a row sputters. Truex dominated the conversation from that point forward, leading 125 laps and winning by 11.6 seconds , a The win was Truex 's second on the season at Kansas , third win in the playoffs and seventh win overall.

The next 2 points races will be on 1.5-mile tracks in Kansas and Charlotte. Last year in winning the championship, Martin Truex Jr . made a living on those tracks, winning 7 of the 11 races with more than 1,100 laps led.

Truex then deadpanned, “It’s pretty evident that the Fords have an unfair advantage this year, so I’ll just throw that out there.”

Truex’s remark prompted an exchange with third-place finisher Joey Logano, who drives a Ford for Team Penske.

Logano: Boy have the tides turned and you don’t like it.

Truex: How does it feel?

Logano: “How does it feel? Not as good as the 4, I can tell you that much. (laughs). I’m still chasing a car that’s way faster then me. It used to be the 78, now it’s the 4 at this point.

Truex had entered the race seeking a third consecutive win at Kansas Speedway after sweeping the track’s events last year.

The No. 78 team was coming off a rough stretch of races after its win at Auto Club Speedway in March. Prior to finishing fourth at Dover last week, Truex hadn’t finished better than 14th in the previous four races.

After qualifying seventh but not having a presence in the top 10 for much of the race Saturday, Truex took the lead on a Lap 253 restart after electing to not pit. He kept it through another restart, leading 13 laps before Harvick passed him.

Truex Jr. aims to regain championship form, and Dover might be place to do it

  Truex Jr. aims to regain championship form, and Dover might be place to do it Truex has crashed out of three of the last four races and had a 14th-place run at Richmond, leaving him ninth in the point standings. There’s no cause for panic, but Truex is ready to turn things around.“We’ve had four tough races in a row, and we’re ninth in points,” Truex said. “You’re only as good as your last race, so they say, and right now I wouldn’t say we’re the hunted – I’d say we’re the hunters.“Just trying to get back on track and get to where we need to go. I think we always tend to focus on our program more than anything else, and I think I’d say most of the garage is the same way.

Truex Jr . comes up short at Richmond. Richmond doesn’t disappoint in final laps . Martin Truex Jr . discusses what it means to have a front-row starting position and why he believes No. 78 team is ready for a Richmond win .

Truex Jr . celebrates his second win of 2017. Martin Truex Jr . had the fastest car at the right time as he stormed to victory at the GoBowling 400 at Kansas Speedway. A re-start with 40 laps to run saw Truex Jr . come from ninth place to challenge for the victory in the cool of the night.

“I think the last couple years we’ve both ran up front a lot,” Truex said of him and Harvick. “I wish I was first tonight.  I don’t know who’s got the better of the firsts in the one‑two finishes between the both of us, but for me, it’s kind of really cool feather in the cap to be racing with Kevin and his team for wins and consistently running up front with those guys.  They’re really good at what they do.  I feel like since him and (crew chief) Rodney (Childers) got together in 2014, they’ve been consistently one of the guys to beat year in and year out.  Anytime you’re out there racing with these guys fighting for wins, battling it out, that’s where you want to be.  They’re a stout group. …

“They’re hitting on all cylinders.  They’ve got a great balanced race car and they’re doing all the right things.  I feel like we’re just a step behind that.”

Related slideshow: 2018 NASCAR Cup Series race winners (provided by photo services)

After out-dueling Truex Jr., is there any stopping Harvick? .
Kevin Harvick passed defending race champion Martin Truex Jr. with one lap to go and won the KC Masterpiece 400 on Saturday night at Kansas Speedway. The win was Harvick's fifth in 12 Cup races this season. It was his second consecutive win and third at Kansas Speedway, tying Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Gordon for the most in track history.The last driver to win five of the first 12 races of a season was Gordon, who did it on his way to the Cup championship.Harvick, the 2014 Cup champion, started from the pole and led 72 laps in his No. 4 Stewart-Haas Ford during the first half of the race.

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