Sunday’s Sprint Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor speedway was supposed to be a good omen for Martin Truex Jr. and his Furniture Row Racing team.

Unfortunately, on Sunday night Truex Jr. got bitterly unlucky and could only muster a 12th-place finish in a race that could’ve gone a lot better.

Comfortably running in sixth place, and gaining time on cars in front of him, Truex Jr. came down pit road with 55 laps remaining, ready for new tires and fuel.

The unlucky break for Truex Jr. came six laps later when a caution flag came out and Truex Jr. found himself in 23rd place. However, Truex Jr. sucked it up and drove remarkably well on a tack that is known to be difficult to pass on.

In the final 43 laps, Truex Jr. picked up 11 spots to end in 12th-place.

Crew chief Cole Pearn said in a statement, “To come back from 23rd to 12th with 43 (laps) to go was pretty awesome driving by Marti. If there were a few more laps, we could have had a top-10. We only made minor changes throughout the race and felt that we had a top-three car. But what is encouraging is that what we learned today we can build on when we return here for the second Chase race in September.”

Truex Jr. echoed the sentiment of his crew chief saying, “We got a bad break on the timing of the final pit stop and that took away any chance of the top-five or better finish. We did rally back, but we were sure better than 12th today.”

After finishing in the top 10 in 14 of the first 15 races of the season, Truex Jr. has now had four straight finishes outside the top 10.

While the Furniture Row Racing team will be disappointed with the result this weekend, they will not be discouraged. All season long, they have been in contention and this will only bode well for when the 10-race chase begins.

Truex Jr. remains fifth in driver points and sixth in the chase playoff standings, with seven races remaining before the 16-driver, 10-race chase begins.

The next Sprint Cup race is the Brickyard 400 at the famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday, July 26.

Sammy Mugharbil, a Mile High Sports intern and MSU-Denver student contributed to this report