Martin Truex Jr. just didn’t have enough in his quest for consecutive championships in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series. Truex finished second to Joey Logano, who made the decisive pass with 12 laps to go in Sunday’s Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
MORE: Full race results
Truex, who is moving to Joe Gibbs Racing for the 2019 season after Furniture Row Racing closes shop, reacted to the second-place finish after emerging from the No. 78 Toyota on pit road.
“I’m gonna miss these guys,” Truex said of his Furniture Row teammates in an interview with NBC. “I wish we could have won it. We had it. We were able to get the lead, I was just slow first 15 laps. I just couldn’t do it. I don’t know what else I could have done. He passed me so fast I didn’t even have a chance to do anything.
“Not the way we wanted to go out, but hell of an effort. Been the best time of my life. I don’t know what else to say.”
The numbers say plenty.
In a five-year run with Furniture Row, Truex Jr. won 17 races — including eight in a 2017 championship effort — and logged 56 top-five finishes. The black No. 78 Toyota became one of the fastest cars in the track, and Truex Jr. evolved from a driver with two career Monster Energy Series wins to a NASCAR superstar.
He’ll drive the No. 19 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing next season, with crew chief Cole Pearn coming along with him.
“Everything about it has been great,” Truex Jr. said. “Everything about it has been the best thing I’ve ever been a part of. You know, I feel good about my future and going to a great place, and I know we’ll have more success. But it’s going to be different. You know, it’s going to be a different team, a different cast of characters, and these guys were a special group, and I’m very thankful to get to work with all of them.
” … It’s just been a good ride. It’s been a good run, and I hate to see it come to an end, but everything ends somewhere.”