Martin Truex Jr. finally got a chance to give the crowd a smoke show, as he scored his first win of the 2020 NASCAR Cup Series season in Wednesday’s Blue-Emu Maximum Pain Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway.
Truex, 39, who started fifth, was not the dominant car through the first two Stages of the race, but when the chips were on the table, the No. 19 car rocketed to the front.
The New Jersey-native led 132-laps en route to his 27th-career victory.
Ryan Blaney had an up and down and back up again day. He started from the pole, but then sunk like a rock in the opening Stage, as he even went a lap down at one point. Then, he got back on the lead lap and worked his way back up the standings.
Blaney would finish runner-up, roughly 4.7-seconds behind Truex.
Brad Keselowski, Joey Logano — who won Stage 1 — and Chase Elliott made up the remainder of the top-five.
Alex Bowman wound up sixth, and he was followed by Matt DiBenedetto, William Byron, Kurt Busch and Jimmie Johnson — the Stage 2 winner — rounded out the top-10 in the race.
Bubba Wallace, who was running a special Black Lives Matters paint scheme on his No. 43, came home an impressive 11th.
Michael McDowell, who finished 14th and Corey LaJoie, who ended up 18th, were other pleasant surprises in this race.
Post-Race Stat Pack:
Toby is the Founder, Editor and go-to man for TobyChristie.com. He is also the co-host of The Final Lap Weekly Podcast. Additionally, Toby is a NMPA (National Motorsports Press Association) award winning writer, and has followed NASCAR as a fan since 1993.