Martin Truex Jr. must have had a sense of déjà vu.
As was the case in the fall race at Richmond Raceway, Truex led the most laps Saturday (121) and was in position late to contend for a victory. And then disaster struck.
Saturday night it was a jack problem on one of his final pit stops, sending Truex from the second position and looking to race Kyle Busch for the victory, to outside the top 10. After an overtime restart, Truex, who started from the pole, crossed the finish line 14th.
“Pretty disappointed that we didn’t get at least a chance,” said Truex. “It’s unfortunate. I don’t know what we have to do to win one of these short tracks and get everything to go the way we need it to. Tonight we beat ourselves, so that’s unfortunate.
“The guys did a really good job with the racecar. We were awful at the start of the race, and I thought we were really in trouble. Just fought all night long and tried to stick with it and make good adjustments, and put ourselves in position to try to win another one and just came up short.
“Frustrated, but proud of everyone for the effort and hopefully, we get them next week.”
Of his 16 career wins in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, Truex has not won at a track less than one mile in length.
Last September, Truex led 198 laps at Richmond but was wrecked on a late-race restart. In 25 starts at Richmond, his best finish is third (fall, 2016).