Martin Truex Jr. named EMPA Driver of the Year

Martin Truex, Jr. has been named the 2016 Eastern Motorsport Press Association National Driver of the Year.

The award, which is voted on by members of the EMPA, goes to Truex for the second time in his NASCAR career. He won Al Holbert Memorial National Driver of the Year trophy in 2004 after winning the XFINITY Series championship.

Several dominating races for Truex, four wins, five poles, and a series-high 1,805 laps led all factored into Truex receiving the prestigious award.

The Mayetta, N.J. native set career-highs across the board in 2016 and dominated the Coca-Cola 600 by leading a NASCAR record 588 miles and led an event record 392 laps.

“My racing roots are in the Northeast and to be recognized by the EMPA takes on a special meaning for the entire Truex family,” noted Truex. “My family has spent many days and nights racing at Northeastern tracks, and that’s why I always feel like I’m going home when the NASCAR series competes at Dover, Pocono and New Hampshire.

“I want to thank the EMPA members for this humbling honor. The real heroes are my teammates at Furniture Row Racing for bringing fast race cars to the track on a weekly basis.”

Truex adds his name for a second time to a prestigious list of drivers from different racing series, including Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Rusty Wallace, Tony Stewart, and Terry Labonte from NASCAR; Mario Andretti, Michael Andretti and Mark Donohue from IndyCar; and Joe Amato and John Force from NHRA.

The annual EMPA convention takes place at the Crowne Plaza hotel in King of Prussia, Pa. from Jan. 6-8. The awards banquet will be held on Jan. 7.