Martin Truex Jr. looks on after the 2022 Coke Zero Sugar 400 at Daytona International Speedway on August 28
Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Martin Truex Jr. Went From Racing for His Dad's Team to Making Millions in the Cup Series

Martin Truex Jr. sure has come a long way in the past two decades. In 2000, when he was only 20 years old, the Mayetta, New Jersey native was renting a home from Dale Earnhardt Jr., his teammate at the time, in Mooresville, North Carolina. Six years later, Truex bought the $1.5 million, 8,220 square-foot home outright. Now, at the age of 42, Truex is a two-time Xfinity Series champion and the 2017 NASCAR Cup Series champion. He's clearly found a way to make a living doing this whole racing thing. Needless to say, Truex will never need to rent ever again.

Obviously, Martin's millions didn't come overnight. It took a whole lot of hard work and dedication to get to where he is today. But, it also doesn't hurt that he comes from a family whose biggest passion is stock car racing.

From Following in Dad's Footsteps to Carving His Own Path

Martin Truex Jr. takes a selfie with the NASCAR Clash at the Coliseum trophy in victory lane after winning the 2023 Clash at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on February 05

Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images

You could say that Martin Lee Truex Jr. has racing in his blood. Martin Truex Sr. had a seven-year career as a NASCAR Xfinity Series racer, while Martin Jr.'s younger brother Ryan, who currently competes in the Xfinity Series, is a Camping World East Series champion and a K&N Pro Series East champion. As for Junior's career, he got his start like most NASCAR greats: racing go-karts.

When he was 18, Truex made the move to the Modified division in New Jersey, and soon after, he started driving in the Busch North Series for his father's team, Truex Motorsports. Next came Chance 2 Motorsports in 2003. Remember that Xfinity Series team? You may not, as it had a relatively short lifespan. Launched by Dale Jr. and Teresa Earnhardt in '03, it closed shop after the 2005 season, with the remnants of the team becoming JR Motorsports. But, Martin Truex made his brief time with the team count, winning back-to-back titles and Most Popular Driver awards in 2004 and 2005.

Truex's next major career milestone came in 2006 when he moved to the No. 1 Dale Earnhardt Inc. Chevrolet full-time in the Nextel Cup Series (he had run a couple Cup races for DEI in '04 and '05). He'd get his first victory in 2007, winning the Autism Speaks 400 at Dover International Speedway. After stints at Earnhardt Ganassi Racing and Michael Waltrip Racing, Truex's big breakout season came in 2015 behind the wheel of the No. 78 Chevy for Furniture Row Racing. With his third-place finish at Michigan International Speedway, Truex became the first driver since Richard Petty in 1969 to start a Cup season with 14 top-10 finishes through the first 15 races. Eventually, he would advance to his first Championship Four appearance and finished a then-career best fourth in the standings.

The following year, despite winning four Cup races (which had been his most in a single season at that point), Truex was eliminated from the playoffs after the Round of 12. But, the defining year of Truex's career would come in 2017, when he won eight races and racked up an additional 11 top-five finishes on the way to his first NASCAR Cup Series championship. He'd finish up his time at Furniture Row Racing in 2018 by making it to his third Championship Four appearance, though he'd ultimately lose the title to Joey Logano.

Today, Martin Truex Jr. competes for Joe Gibbs Racing, where he's been since 2019. Driving the No, 19 Toyota, Truex, who has a total of 31 wins and 261 top-10 finishes in the Cup Series, races alongside teammates Denny Hamlin, Christopher Bell, and Ty Gibbs.

How Martin Truex Jr. Made His Millions

Martin Truex Jr. poses with the trophy in Victory Lane after winning the 2019 ToyotaSave Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on June 23

Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images

According to Celebrity Net Worth, Martin Truex Jr. has an estimated net worth of $40 million. When it comes to yearly salary, the NASCAR champion makes anywhere from $8 million to $11 million, depending on the year. Between June 2018 and June 2019, Truex racked up $8 million, making him the ninth-highest paid NASCAR driver. Around $7 million of that came from track winnings, while the rest came from endorsements. According to Forbes, Truex made $11.5 million from 2019-2020, with $10.4 million coming from salary and winnings, and $1.1 million coming from endorsements and licensing. This made him the fifth-highest paid NASCAR driver during that time. In 2022, Truex was the fourth-richest active driver behind Kevin Harvick, Kyle Busch, and Denny Hamlin.

While Truex definitely makes a pretty penny as a NASCAR driver, he clearly cares about more than just benefitting himself. In 2007, he and his ex-girlfriend Sherry Pollex, an ovarian cancer survivor, started the Martin Truex Jr. Foundation to help children with pediatric cancer. Truex also owns a charter company called MTJ Aviation, which specializes in the human organ transport business. It's not everyday you see a NASCAR driver getting into the aviation field. But, Truex clearly has a solid business sense.

MORE: Crew Members Get in Each Other's Faces After Kyle Busch and Martin Truex Jr. Wreck