Martin Truex Jr. started 14th in Sunday’s Sprint Cup Series race and by Lap 58 of 200 he vaulted into the lead. He went on to lead seven consecutive laps at Michigan International Speedway before coming down pit road for a routine four-tire green flag stop.
Unfortunately for Truex, the pit stop didn’t turn out to be routine. When it came to replacing the left side tires, the jack dropped before the the left-rear tire was stabilized. The incident caused major damage to the rear quarter panel section on Truex’s No. 78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Toyota.
“We were never the same after that pit stop,” said Truex, who was credited with a 20th-place finish. “We made a number of unscheduled stops to try to fix the problem, but the damage was just too severe to overcome.”
Truex served an early notice that he had a fast hot rod. By the second lap he went from 14th to 10th. He was running second on Lap 45 and then took the lead on Lap 58 by passing Kevin Harvick.
“Let another strong performance slip away,” said Truex
The Furniture Row Racing driver remains eighth in driver points and 10th in Chase playoff points. There are two races remaining before the start of the 10-race Chase.
The Pure Michigan 400 race winner was Kyle Larson. Finishing in the top-10 in order were Chase Elliott, Brad Keselowski, Ryan Blaney, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Carl Edwards, Jamie McMurray, Denny Hamlin and Joey Logano.
The caution flag flew four times for 17 laps and there were 20 lead changes among 13 drivers.
The next Sprint Cup Series race is Sunday night Sept. 4, the Southern 500 at Darlington (S.C.) Raceway.