Truex Jr. Wins Race and Championship

Martin Truex Jr.

"I wanted this ever since I was a kid. Just never give up, never give up." (Photo: Getty Images)


Race Results | All-Time Champions | Photos | Final Standings

HOMESTEAD, Fla. - Martin Truex Jr. held off Kyle Busch to win Sunday's Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway and the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series championship.

Truex Jr. scored his eighth win of the season to claim his first career Cup Series championship.

“We just never gave up all day long,” Truex said. “We didn’t have the fastest car, but we dug deep…made it happen. I wanted this ever since I was a kid. Just never give up, never give up.”

He held off Kyle Busch by .681-seconds at the checkered flag. Truex Jr. led 78 laps, his car number on Sunday afternoon. The Furniture Row Racing driver won seven of the season’s 11 races on 1.5-mile tracks, the most in series history.

"We gave it our all, congratulations to the 78,” Busch said. “They deserved it every other race, but today I thought we were better."

Kyle Larson, Kevin Harvick and Chase Elliott rounded out the top five.

"I think when you look at it from the inside out and all the work that everybody went through, the preparation that we went through to get to these playoffs was second to none, Harvick said. “It was a championship effort. Just came up a little bit short."

Joey Logano, Brad Keselowski, Matt Kenseth, Denny Hamlin and Ryan Newman rounded out the top 10.

How Truex Jr. Won: Truex Jr. had to fight to keep Busch in his rear view mirror. Busch battled back after a late caution for an incident ironically involving his older brother Kurt changed the complexion of the race and erased a pit strategy that crew chief Adam Stevens had hoped would keep them in the lead. Truex Jr. was the first off pit road on the final start and despite Busch trying several different lines to try and close the gap he was able to maintain the advantage and take the checkered flag and the crown.

Who Had a Good Day: Larson led 145 laps and let the two championship contenders battle between themselves down the stretch. He has top five finishes in the last three races at Miami…Harvick finished third in the championship and finished top 10 in the last 10 races at Miami, the longest streak ever at the track… Elliott finished top five in six of the last 10 races this season and finished fifth in the championship.

Who Had a Bad Day:
Danica Patrick’s final start as a full-time Cup driver ended in an accident and 37th-place finish…Ryan Blaney battled an ill-handling car all afternoon and finished 29th…Jimmie Johnson hit the wall and was never a factor in the race limping home to a 22nd-place performance.

What Else Happened: The first two stages of the race belonged to Larson who had a dominant car. But the track conditions changed as the sun set and the surface cooled. Drivers who had cars set up for the longer runs and cooler conditions at the end of the race excelled and after a final caution that bunched up the field, Truex Jr. was able to outdistance the field and hold off Busch for the win and title.

Quotable: "Proud of him, man. What a story for Martin...Hope all the fans enjoyed this season, I know it wasn't everything we wanted on the track, but we had fun," Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Notable: Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished 25th in his 631st Cup start…Truex Jr.’s average finish on 1.5-mile tracks this season was 2.5…Sunday’s race at Homestead-Miami Speedway was officially a sellout... Matt Kenseth's No. 20 Toyota had two loose lug nuts in post-race check. Brad Keselowski's No. 2 Ford had one loose lug nut.


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