NASCAR Cup Series
Riding with Martin: Teamwork pays off in Daytona
NASCAR Cup Series

Riding with Martin: Teamwork pays off in Daytona

Published Feb. 11, 2009 6:21 p.m. ET

Well, winning the pole for the Daytona 500 isn't a bad way to start off our season ...

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From Kevin Harvick's surprising Bud Shootout win to Martin Truex Jr.'s pole run, relive the best moments from Daytona International Speedway with The Final Lap.

I just finished all of my media obligations, and I still can't believe it. You know that winning the pole for the Great American Race is a big deal, but you have no idea how important it is until it happens to you. I met with media members for three hours and then had to get in the car to head to Orlando to film a fishing show. But it will all be worth it when I'm leading the field to the start of the 51st Daytona 500.

I'm so happy for Bono (crew chief Kevin Manion) and the rest of my crew. They have dealt with so much uncertainty during the offseason, but they never complained, never stopped working hard and now all of that perseverance has paid off! Most of my guys have been with me since I was in the Nationwide Series so they're not team members — they're good friends of mine. Hopefully, winning the pole for the Daytona 500 is a sign of good things to come for this year.

I just finished my last radio interview on the way to Orlando. I will be down here for the next two days filming a fishing show with pro fisherman, Roland Martin. My buddy Ryan Newman, who coincidentally enough is also the defending Daytona 500 winner, will be fishing with us, too, so it should be a lot of fun. We'll be hitting the lakes around Walt Disney World and hope to catch some big fish like we did last year.

After we get done with the fishing, it'll be back to work as I'll head back to the track Tuesday night for a full schedule of racing, appearances and media obligations next week. I'll be signing autographs at the Bass Pro Shops souvenir rig at the track on Wednesday and most importantly, will be busy with drafting practice getting ready for the 500.


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