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NASCAR Cup: Martin Truex Jr. honored for championship season

Martin Truex Jr. speaks during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Awards program at Wynn Las Vegas on Nov. 30, 2017 (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

Martin Truex Jr. speaks during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Awards program at Wynn Las Vegas on Nov. 30, 2017 (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

By AMANDA VINCENT

Martin Truex Jr. was the man of honor during the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Awards program Thursday at Wynn Las Vegas, as he, his No. 78 Furniture Row Racing team and Toyota officially were recognized as the 2017 Cup Series champions.

Truex was introduced to the stage by recently retired driver and friend, Dale Earnhardt Jr.

“Tonight we celebrate our championship driver,’’ Earnhardt said. “But to me and many who know him, he’s a champion in so many ways, like when his professional career turned challenging, his options limited. He blamed no one; he kept his head high. He persevered, because he’s a champion person. While the love of his life battles the most evil of diseases, and he stands with her to make her fight his fight, he’s a champion partner. When he’s away from the track, perhaps enjoying his true passion for hunting or fishing, you realize this — he’s a champion friend. He’s the man, the champion in so many ways, and no one more deserving of this night.’’

When Truex took the stage, he thanks his family, longtime girlfriend Sherry Pollex and his race team for helping him live out a childhood dream.

“Dad, we did it! This is a childhood dream for me,” Truex said. “The 78 race team has carried the same motto throughout the season and that’s ‘never give up.’ No one has lived that out more than my life partner Sherry. As we all know, Sherry was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2014. Today, she is still fighting her disease with tenacity and a never-give-up attitude that inspires millions of people to do the same. She is the true champion.’’

Truex also mentioned car owner Barney Visser, who wasn’t in attendance, as he continues his recovery from a recent heart attack.

“Barney Visser is the heart of this team,” Truex said. “People thought he was crazy 12 years ago, starting a NASCAR team in Denver. Barney, who is crazy now?’’

Truex also remembered late crew member Jim Watson, who passed away after suffering a heart attack during the October Kansas Speedway race weekend.

“Here’s to you, ‘Wild Man,’ ’’ Truex said. “Cheers.’’

Also during Thursday’s program, Dale Earnhardt Jr. was awarded the Most Popular Driver Award for a record 15th-consecutive year and the Bill France Award for Excellence, and Julian Maha was presented with the Betty Jane France Humanitarian Award.

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HERE’S VIDEO FOOTAGE OF TRUEX’S SPEECH FROM THE MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES AWARDS:

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Posted by on December 1, 2017. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,Monster Energy NASCAR Cup,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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