SONOMA, CA - JUNE 11: Martin Truex, Jr (#19 Joe Gibbs Racing Bass Pro Shops Toyota) poses for a photo with his team and celebrates winning the NASCAR Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 on Sunday June 11, 2023, at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, CA.
Photo by Ben Warden/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Martin Truex Jr. Credits His Record-Breaking Sonoma Win to Just One Thing

2022 was a season to forget for Martin Truex Jr. Fast-forward to this season, and the team looks to be in a far better place.

2022 was a season to forget for Martin Truex Jr. and the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 19 team, as they went winless. Fast-forward to this season, and the team looks to be in a far better place.

Truex and his Bass Pro Shops Toyota team were able to outshine everyone else at Sonoma Raceway to once again drink from the wine goblet. The win was Truex's second of the 2023 season and his fourth win at the Sonoma, California road course. It put him in elite company, as he now only trails Jeff Gordon's five wins at the track for the most in NASCAR history.

The win wasn't just Truex's 33rd of his career. He also put on yet another dominating performance — much as he has done in his three prior visits to victory lane in wine country — beating runner-up finisher Kyle Busch by nearly three seconds. This was a complete turnaround from where Truex finished in this race in 2022, when he couldn't even reach the top 10. Truex gave plenty of credit to his team following Sunday's victory, making it clear they were a driving force behind the record-breaking win.

"Hats off to my team," Truex said. "To be so bad here last year and to come back and do that with the same car, basically, it's really unbelievable. Just proud of them. We're having a great year. I feel really good about our team ..."

It has been a rough start to the season for a lot of teams in NASCAR, but Truex and his team look to be the best Toyota has to offer at this point, with two wins and plenty of speed in the last month or so. The win also helped Truex climb to the top of the regular season points standings, as he holds a 13-point margin over William Byron.

Car owner Joe Gibbs couldn't believe the team's turnaround, as he saw the 2022 Sonoma race as one of the worst races his team has ever had. Clearly, Toyota as a whole has finally gotten things in a much better place. That's especially true on the road courses, where it had a major struggle throughout the 2022 season — with only one win, at the Charlotte Roval by Christopher Bell.

Two road courses down and two wins for Toyota in 2023. How many more of those victories can they get?

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