Martin Truex Jr., driving for Joe Gibbs Racing, is among the drivers behind the wheel of a Toyota and has given his opinion on what might be causing the brand's poor performances so far this season.
Toyota is among the three manufacturers of NASCAR Cup Series vehicles, and drivers of their cars have been struggling since the start of the season.
Currently, Martin Truex Jr. is the only Toyota driver in the top-ten of NASCAR’s standings at the 7th position with 172 points. Truex Jr. is among the three Toyota drivers in NASCAR’s playoffs.
As a result of Toyota's poor performance, Martin Truex Jr. believes that being behind throughout testing has hampered Toyota's performance this season. Concerning the issue, Truex Jr. stated that:
“Really if you are off, you are off. I think for us that’s a big thing. We’re sim racing right now. We’ve been behind throughout testing, and I feel like that has definitely hurt us, so we are definitely searching and at this point doing some testing.”
Toyota has managed to clinch several top-five finishes, but it hasn’t been lucky enough to collect any wins this season. Toyota has experienced more success in the NASCAR Xfinity series, with Ty Gibbs claiming the most recent victory.
Last weekend at the Circuit of the Americas, Truex Jr. recorded his best finish of the season after he secured the seventh position. Though the No. 19 driver has not yet collected a win this season, he has recorded a reasonable points total.
Martin Truex Jr.'s performances since the kick-off of the 2022 season
Martin Truex Jr. began the season at an average level, taking 13th place in the Daytona 500, 2022s inaugural race.
At the Daytona 500, Truex Jr. came away with 49 points. He went on to maintain the same position in Fontana, but this time around, he dropped in points, earning only 24.
On Twitter, NASCAR updated the performance of Truex Jr.
In a bid to collect his first win of the season and defend his 2021 win at Phoenix Raceway, he found himself in a tight spot after being caught up in a messy wreck. He fell to 35th place.
Despite the disappointing performance at Phoenix, he made an impressive comeback, claiming 8th place at Atlanta and 7th at COTA, increasing his tally to three top-ten finishes in the 2022 season.