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Truex makes long-awaited return to victory lane

"We finally had a race car that was fantastic with this Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet. And the pit crew and Alan [Gustafson, crew chief] the rest of the day were just spot-on. Great adjustments. We had a lot of fun out there," he continued. "I knew that we could probably never get to that #56, but boy, we were sure having fun coming up through there."

As impressive as Gordon's run had been, it was hard to eclipse the feat of Kurt Busch who recovered from that early pit stop speeding fiasco to battle his way back onto the lead lap and into fourth place at the finish behind Carl Edwards.

“Yeah, we were fast, - even on pit road, twice!" he laughed. "I messed-up, flat-out. I didn't hit my tachometer right and I was speeding both times. It was one of those where I'm like how does that happen?

"But man, this Furniture Row Chevy was fast," he continued. "Congrats to Truex. When we were running a lap down with him, I was trying to pace myself. I wanted to get back on the lead lap. We did get back on the lead lap when he pitted, but we had to battle hard.

"We came back up through there. You've got to rub guys and move guys and we gave guys room and just made one mistake," he added. "I think we could have gotten all the way up to second, but we never would have caught Truex."

That left Martin Truex Jr. celebrating in victory lane by imbibing a drink of some Californian wine as part of the traditional prize for winning at Sonoma, along with the MWR team and crew chief Chad Johnson.

"Obviously I'm ecstatic," he said. "Just proud of Chad and proud of my team and so happy to get NAPA into victory lane. This means so much to me. They've stood behind me for the first three years of our deal, and I can't even tell you they've been such huge supporters or ours.

"I'm just so proud today, I'm able to put Chad and all my guys in victory lane because they work so hard and they do such a great job and there's been countless times where they deserved to win the race and for some reason it just didn't happen," he added. "That's the biggest thing about today, just proud to get all those folks into victory lane. Obviously for me it's just - you know, it's quite a relief to be honest. I don't know what else to say. Just a special, special day for me. It was a lot of fun today," he summed up.

With Carl Edwards settling for third place at the line, six spots ahead of championship leader Jimmie Johnson, it means that Johnson's lead in the NASCAR Sprint Cup standings has been trimmed a little to 25 points heading to Kentucky next weekend.

Full race results and Sprint Cup Championship standings are available.



Related Pictures

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Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, leads Kasey Kahne, driver of the #5 Farmers Insurance Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on June 23, 2013 in Sonoma, California. (Photo by Robert Laberge/Getty Images)
Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 CESSNA Chevrolet, leads the field alongside Marcos Ambrose, driver of the #9 Stanley Ford, during the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on June 23, 2013 in Sonoma, California. (Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
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Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on June 23, 2013 in Sonoma, California. (Photo by Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser Chevrolet, leads Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 16, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Chase Elliott, driver of the #9 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet, celebrates with the trophy in Victory Lane with team owner Dale Earnhardt jr. after winning the series championship during the NASCAR Nationwide Series Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 15, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/Getty Images for NASCAR)
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Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 ToyotaCare Toyota, pits during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Ford EcoBoost 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 14, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, who is not in the Championship Four final phase of the Chase, qualified for 2nd position Friday, November 14, 2014 for Sunday`s final NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. He will be joined on the front row by Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet SS who won the Pole position. Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet SS, who is not in the Championship Four final phase of the Chase, won the pole position Friday, November 14, 2014 for Sunday`s final NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. He will be joined by Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS on the front row. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet, poses with the Coors Light Pole Award after qualifying for pole position for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 14, 2014 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 ParkerStore Chevrolet, poses with the Keystone Light Pole Award after qualifying for pole position for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Ford EcoBoost 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 14, 2014 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Carl Edwards, driver of the #99 Fastenal Ford, climbs out of his car during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 7, 2014 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS finished in 2nd place Sunday, November 9, 2014 in the final Eliminator 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. Gordon just missed out being in the Championship 4 finale next week at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)

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