Real NASCAR: Truex Jr. shines brightest in Martinsville

Martin Truex Junior won his second consecutive Martinsville Speedway race Wednesday night, ultimately cruising to a 4.232-second victory over a trio of Team Penske cars in the Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500.

Compared to his dominating victory at the half-mile track last fall (when he led 464 of 500 laps), Truex had to negotiate and muscle his way to the front this time.

“We’ve been working a long-time on trying to figure this place out and just been chipping away at it,” said Truex, who drives the No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota Camry.

“The last couple years we’ve been really strong; 2018 was a heartbreaker at the end of the race there. Last year to get the win and this year, hats off to the guys.”

All three Team Penske cars hounded Truex and kept him honest, ready to seize upon any late race lapse in concentration. But the 2017 series champion was strong and determined, earning his first victory of the season in the first official NASCAR Cup Series night race since the historic track installed lights in 2017.

Penske teammates Ryan Blaney, Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano finished second, third and fourth. They combined to lead 273 laps with Logano’s 234 laps out front the most for any driver on the night.

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