Dover 2023: Würth 400 win for Martin Truex Jr. gives brothers a Dover weekend sweep
Martin Truex Jr. made sure this NASCAR weekend at Dover Motor Speedway would be one to bookmark in the family keepsake album.
Truex held off Ross Chastain in a lengthy duel in the final stage, then survived a late restart racing side by side with Ryan Blaney to win the Würth 400 NASCAR Cup Series race on a beautiful May Day at Dover Motor Speedway.
It was the fourth Dover win for Truex, snapping a 54-race winless streak. He is the 10th driver to win four or more Cup Series races at the Monster Mile.
“It feels incredible,” Truex said. “It’s always special to come here. It was good to get this hot rod out front.”
The win also completed a Truex sweep at the Monster Mile as his brother Ryan won the A-GAME 200 NASCAR Xfinity Series race on Saturday.
Both brothers drive No. 19 Toyotas for Joe Gibbs Racing and hail from Mayetta, New Jersey, just across the Delaware Bay from the Monster Mile. It is the second time brothers have swept a weekend of races at Dover (1994, Rusty/Mike Wallace) and the Truex duo are the fifth set of siblings to accomplish the feat in NASCAR history.
“This is a special day,” Truex said. “It was a big day for the family to see that on Saturday. I love coming up here to Dover. It's been an awesome track for me over the years.”
"The NASCAR family is tight-knit and pulls for each other,” Gibbs added. “They love great weekends and great stories like this.”
Truex averaged 115.505 mph to complete the 400-mile race in 3 hours, 27 minutes and 47 seconds, half a second ahead of Chastain.
"Gosh, so close," said Chastain, who led 98 laps. "It's surreal to continue to do this and race against my heroes."
Blaney placed third, William Byron, who led a race-high 193 laps finished fourth, and Denny Hamlin came in fifth.
Truex steadily moved through the field after starting 17th, finishing ninth after Stage One and fourth following Stage Two. Byron won Stage One and Chastain took Stage Two.
Truex then held on during a restart with less than 10 laps remaining after a late caution, with crew chief James Small deciding to take two tires for the final sprint.
“I knew if we could get the lead we could clear out there, even though we had a lot of laps on the tires,” Small said. “I thought there were others that would do it. It was definitely helpful that [Blaney] and [Christopher Bell] run the same deal.”
Picking the outside lane before the restart, he stayed even with Blaney on the first lap after the green flag but pulled away to clinch his 32nd career Cup Series victory.
“When I saw the late caution, I thought what now,” said Truex, who led 68 of the race’s final 69 laps. “We made a great call to take two tires.
“We’ve given a few away here over the years. It feels good to finally, finally put it all together. These races are hard to win. We’re going to enjoy this one.”
Eight drivers led at least one lap and 12 finished on the lead lap. Seven cautions took up 46 laps.
Among other notable finishers, Kyle Busch led 25 laps after starting on the pole but finished 21st, three laps down and Kyle Larson, who showed early speed, was caught up in a bad-luck wreck in Turn 1 in Stage 1 and ended up 32nd.