Martin Truex Jr. went on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio with Dave Moody on Tuesday afternoon and talked about Gateway, the NextGen car, and his future. Truex said he is getting close to figuring out what he is going to do next year.
What are Truex’s thoughts on the NextGen car and his future?
Martin Truex Jr. on NASCAR’s NextGen car
The NextGen car has thrown a curveball into many drivers and their driving styles as they look to acclimate themselves to the new car.
It has been a season full of parity and that has been shown on a weekly basis as the only drivers with more than one win include Joey Logano, Ross Chastain, and William Byron.
Truex talked about his season overall and what has been going on for him and the No. 19 team.
RFK Racing driver and owner Brad Keselowski was public in his comments about how he wanted longer practice and qualifying sessions due to many factors including money and simulator work.
Teams have been needing to show up closer because there isn’t enough time to make major adjustments. The cars need to be unloaded off the hauler at a very competitive level and it risks issues in practice.
Outside of the limited practice time, Truex discussed what he has personally needed to do with the NextGen car to improve his driving.
“I was so trained and tuned in and comfortable in what we had and the way I liked to drive the car made speed. I’ve had to change that a bit. I’ve definitely been re-learning things, trying to get rid of old habits. That’s been a part of the process.”Martin Truex Jr.
The learning process has been significant for almost every driver, which is why the veterans don’t have as much of an advantage over the competition as usual. Everyone is learning at the same time.
Drivers and teams are learning on a weekly basis which translates to the ups and downs that are happening through the regular season.
However, the 41-year-old driver believes their time is coming. “I think we’re getting closer to being dialed in,” the NASCAR driver said.
It has been a struggle thus far, but it seems like Truex might be getting closer to returning to not only winning ways but more consistency on a weekly basis.
Martin Truex Jr. nearing a decision on his 2023 plans
Martin Truex Jr. is currently in his 17th full-time season in the NASCAR Cup Series and it hasn’t been without significant turnover for the 2017 Cup Series champion.
Truex has been with many organizations that have eventually shut down. Dale Earnhardt, Inc., Earnhardt Ganassi Racing, Michael Waltrip Racing and Furniture Row Racing before landing with Joe Gibbs Racing.
The 41-year-old driver has won a race in seven straight seasons dating back to his Furniture Row days, but it hasn’t been a typical season for him to this point.
Truex has the least amount of top-5 finishes and third-most top-10 finishes among his Joe Gibbs Racing teammates. While there have been opportunities to win, it has not been as consistent.
Truex talked about racing in NASCAR and the commitment that it takes.
“This sport is not easy. This is very hard. It takes a lot of effort. It takes a lot of commitment.”Martin Truex Jr. on his commitment to NASCAR
It’s certainly not easy to be in NASCAR full-time as it takes away from quality time with your family and missing events you wouldn’t miss when you are at home.
Plus, the workload over the course of the season is massive. It’s not just going to the race track every weekend. There is also work going on during the week preparing for the upcoming events.
Due to these factors, it makes sense why Truex might not be 100% committed to racing in the Cup Series next season.
“If I’m gonna sign that paper and say I’m going to race again next year, I want to make sure that I am 100% committed. As I have told you, 95% does not get anything done.”Martin Truex Jr. on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
Commitment is a big factor because being a professional athlete means you are away from friends and loved ones more often. It’s a sacrifice that is willing to be made and has to be done to the best of your abilities.
The driver of the No. 19 car has come close to winning a championship in three of the last four seasons, so he is certainly capable of making it happen.
With that being said, Truex stated he is getting closer to a decision on what his future is going to bring him. “I’m getting close to figuring out what I am gonna do and no matter what, I’ve obviously had a great career,” Martin Truex Jr. said.
Overall, Truex has certainly had a Hall-of-Fame career and it should be the decision he is comfortable making for his future. It’s much more than racing and that’s an important factor.
However, Truex still has time to go win more races and possibly a championship. It’s a waiting game at this point as the NASCAR world waits and sees what Truex does with his future.