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NASCAR Cup Series: Martin Truex Jr. Cruises to 4th Sonoma Win

SONOMA, CALIFORNIA - JUNE 11: Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #19 Bass Pro Shops Toyota, celebrates after winning the NASCAR Cup Series Toyota / Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on June 11, 2023 in Sonoma, California. (Photo by Logan Riely/Getty Images)

Martin Truex Jr. drives away from the field for his fourth career win at Sonoma as the NASCAR Cup Series heads into summer break.

Martin Truex Jr.‘s fourth career win at Sonoma was his third of the 2023 NASCAR Cup Series season. The No. 19 team was the class of the field, leading 51 of 110 laps. Not even a late restart against Kyle Busch could slow MTJ down. Sunday’s race at Sonoma was a huge turnaround for the entire Joe Gibbs Racing organization. The team’s highest finish at Sonoma last year was 26th with Martin Truex Jr. This time around, JGR came to Sonoma with extremely fast race cars. Along with Truex Jr. taking the win, Denny Hamlin qualified on pole, and all four cars qualified in the top eight. Gibbs now has three wins in the last six points races heading into the only Cup Series off-weekend.

A Week off for NASCAR Cup Series

The conclusion of Sunday’s race also signaled the start of an off-week for the NASCAR Cup Series. 17 weeks ago, the season began with the Daytona 500. 20 consecutive race weekends face teams on the other side of this break. With such a brutal schedule the time off is much appreciated for all of the teams. Heading into the off-week last year there were 13 different winners in 16 races. This season has only produced 10 different winners so far. Year two for the next-gen car has seen the super teams of Hendrick Motorsports and Joe Gibbs Racing pull slightly ahead of the others as everyone learns more about the car.

Another good run for Todd Gilliland

A 24th-place finish in the NASCAR Cup Series usually goes unnoticed. Finishing 24th in a Rick Ware Racing car, however, is impressive. Todd Gilliland has been impressive all year long and his 24th place finish at Sonoma is the latest example. After losing his full-time ride before the season, Gilliland has been a very solid driver in whatever car he ends up driving. He is currently 24th in points, ahead of Stewart-Haas Racing drivers Ryan Preece and Aric Almirola. Races like Sonoma, as well as finishing 12 spots higher than his replacement have Todd Gilliland’s stock on the rise.

Featured Image Credit: Logan Riely/Getty Images

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