Martin Truex Jr. said he “hopes Joey Logano is proud of himself” after a “cheap win” Sunday evening at Martinsville Speedway.
Team Penske’s Logano put the bumper to Truex’s Furniture Row Toyota on the final lap to win the First Data 500, securing his spot in the title race at Homestead. After bumping Truex to move him up the track in Turns 3 and 4, the two drivers made door-to-door contact coming off Turn 4 with Logano breaking away for the victory.
Truex finished third as a charging Denny Hamlin went by the No. 78 as Truex was trying to get himself righted. The defending series champion felt he had raced Logano clean to take the lead and he expected the same courtesy.
“I raced him as hard as I race everybody,” said Truex. “I took the lead from him fair and square, and he gave me a cheap shot. It’s a cheap win. I hope he’s proud of himself.”
Of the race, Truex continued “It was fun all the way up until the last turn, and he decided to just knock me out of the way. I get that he wants to go to Homestead. I don’t race like that, and I don’t appreciate it when others race me like that.
“Little bumps, obviously, we run into each other all the time but just deliberately knock me out of the way I thought was a cheap shot. I’ll remember that if he’s in front of me coming to the checkered flag.”
Truex cleared Logano for the race lead coming off Turn 2 and said he had a feeling going down the backstretch of what was going to happen.
“And I just – there was nothing I could do about it,” said Truex. “It sucks but it’s the way it goes. I can promise you; I won’t forget what he did.”
If the roles were reversed, Truex said he would not have pulled the same move. Truex said he had the opportunity to do the same in the same race a year ago with Kyle Busch when he finished second.
“I don’t race like that,” said Truex. “Bumping and banging is fine. But again, I never touched him to pass him so I thought I would get the same courtesy once I passed him. I thought he’s not just going to dump me or knock me out of the way blatantly. He’s going to at least try to pass me. He didn’t even try to pass me.
“It’s cheap. But he’s got his spot to go to homestead. I don’t know. What are you going to do?”
Asked about any retaliation, Truex said, “Whenever he’s first, and I’m second coming off Turn 4 or going into Turn 3. Just have to wait and see.”