Martin Truex Jr.’s victory in Sunday’s Axalta 'We Paint Winners' 400 at Pocono Raceway was the big story, but it wasn’t the only story. Following are 10 things we learned at the 'Tricky Triangle.'
10. Strength in numbers?
The three-car Richard Childress Racing team has a technical alliance with Martin Truex Jr. and the one-car Furniture Row Racing squad, as well as a couple of other teams. Through 14 races, Truex has posted more top-10 finishes (13) than all three RCR drivers (12) combined.
Getty ImagesMatt Sullivan
9. Burning Busch
Kurt Busch was red-hot on Friday, putting the No. 41 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet on the pole for the Axalta 'We Paint Winners' 400 at Pocono Raceway. He was pretty good on Sunday, too, finishing fifth in the No. 41 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet.
Getty ImagesDrew Hallowell
8. Diggin’, diggin’, diggin’
Six-time NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson had a flat tire and a fair amount of body damage to the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, but he still finished third.
NASCAR via Getty ImagesTodd Warshaw
7. A ways to go
After the Kansas race, Kyle Busch was 179 points out of 30th-place. Now, three races later, he has cut the gap to 30th to 151 points. Busch will need to win a race and pick up the pace points-wise if he wants to make the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
Getty ImagesTim Bradbury
6. Boys (and girl) have at it
The first 125 miles of the Pocono race were caution-free. But there were eight cautions over the final 275 miles, as tempers grew short and aggression high at the three-turn track. One of those who got roughed up was Danica Patrick, who still finished ahead of boyfriend Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
Getty ImagesDrew Hallowell
5. Gaining momentum
For the second week in a row, Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates teammates Jamie McMurray and Kyle Larson both finished in the top 10. This team may well win a race or two this year.
NASCAR via Getty ImagesBrian Lawdermilk
4. Best in class
After demonstrating greatly improved performance in recent weeks, the Joe Gibbs Racing Toyotas were good but not great at Pocono. Matt Kenseth was the highest finisher among the JGR squad, coming home sixth.
Getty ImagesJerry Markland
3. Eight is enough
Kevin Harvick, the reigning NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion, finished second in Pocono. This was the eighth time this season and the third time in the past four races that Harvick has been the runner-up.
NASCAR via Getty ImagesJeff Zelevansky
2. The pressure is on
With the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series regular season now past the halfway point, tensions are running very high among drivers and teams not yet locked into the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup. Just ask Jeff Gordon and Alan Gustafson, who bickered over the team's in-car radio at Pocono.
Getty ImagesJeff Zelevansky
1. Good guys win sometimes
On the track and off, Martin Truex Jr. has always been a class act, respected by his peers and colleagues. This year, he’s been fast all season long, with an amazing 13 top-10 finishes in 14 races. You just knew he was going to win sooner or later.