Martin Truex Jr. snaps 218-race losing streak with win in Sonoma 

click to enlarge Martin Truex Jr.
  • Robert Laberge/Getty Images
  • Martin Truex Jr. celebrates after he outlasted the field at the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on Sunday.

SONOMA — The post-race party was a blur after Martin Truex Jr.'s first win since 2007. The celebratory cool-down lap, the burnouts, the drive to Victory Lane all happened so fast.

So he planned to savor every minute of his next win.

He just didn't think it would take six years.

Truex snapped a 218-race winless streak Sunday with an easy victory on the road course at Sonoma Raceway. It was only the second win of Truex's career, but it put Michael Waltrip Racing in Victory Lane for the second year in a row after Clint Bowyer won here last season.

Overwhelmed with emotion as he crossed the finish line, Truex made the celebration count.

"I was a freaking mess. It was terrible," he said. "I had to stop and start doing donuts because I couldn't think about what I was doing. I tried to key the radio once and I couldn't even talk. So I thought, 'OK, I'm going to do some donuts and wave to the fans.' But after I stopped the first time and did that, I calmed down a little bit and I just wanted to make sure I took my time coming back, because I remember at Dover it all happens way too fast. You never know when you're going to get that opportunity again."

Truex blew out his rear tires, tried to wave to every single fan he saw, and took a slow drive around the picturesque road course on his way to Victory Lane, where the MWR crew was waiting to drink from the winner's enormous wine glass.

Truex worked his way to the front and used strategy to stay with the leaders. He then pulled away after the final restart and built a healthy lead of more than six seconds over Juan Pablo Montoya, who was running second until he ran out of gas on the final lap.

Montoya, who came into the weekend knowing if he didn't win he would at least have a huge points day, dropped all the way to 34th after having to coast to the finish. He took a shortcut to skip the final turn, drifted to the finish line and parked. He then walked back to the garage, annoyed his Chip Ganassi Racing team never told him to save fuel.

"We've got tools to prevent things like that from happening," Montoya said.

Montoya got little sympathy from Kyle Busch, who was spun by Montoya early in the race when Montoya drove too deep into a corner and wheel-hopped over a curb.

"Awww. My heart melts for @jpmontoya who ran out of gas," Busch tweeted moments after the race.

Jeff Gordon finished second a week after he was wrecked six laps into the race at Michigan.

Carl Edwards was third, followed by Kurt Busch, who climbed back from a pair of speeding penalties.

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