Going to Kansas City, Kan. is always a special trip for Furniture Row Racing and its driver Martin Truex Jr.
For starters, Kansas Speedway, site of Saturday night’s Sprint Cup Series race, is the closest track to the team’s headquarters in Denver, Colo.
The track has also been one of the favorites for Truex, who has four top-five finishes in the last six races at Kansas.
Truex enters the SpongeBob SquarePants 400 second in driver points as a result of recording nine top-ten finishes in the first 10 races of the season in his No. 78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevrolet. The only other driver to claim nine top-10s to start the season is Kevin Harvick.
During the entire 2014 season, his first with Furniture Row Racing, Truex had only one top-five and five top-10s. The Mayetta, N.J. native has already surpassed both marks after scoring his second top-five (5th) of the season Sunday at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway.
Looking at Truex’s recent record at Kansas it’s easy to understand why he has an affection for Kansas Speedway. He was runner-up at both races in 2012, finished fourth in the 2013 spring race and fourth again in last year’s fall race. The fourth-place finish in October was his best result of 2014.
“I love Kansas Speedway,” said Truex. “I don’t know what it is about the track, it’s not much different than any other mile-and-a-half track, but something about the way the corners are laid out there seems to fit my style. I’ve run well at Kansas, led a lot of laps (251) and feel I should have won a few times there.”
Truex added, “The grooves at Kansas are starting to widen out, which is good. We’re now running second and third grooves on longer runs. Last year I had my best finish of the season at Kansas. I think we can do better considering how much we have improved since that race.”
While Truex has shown an incredible amount of consistency, he would like to step up the pace and drive his No. 78 Chevrolet to Victory Lane.
“We’re enjoying the top-10s this season, but we want to get up there and be fighting for a win,” said Truex. “Cole (Pearn, crew chief), the engineering staff and all the guys at the track and at the shop have done an outstanding job. We’re having plenty of fun, but we want that victory really bad.”