DOVER, Del. – Ryan Truex became the first NASCAR champion in the short history of Michael Waltrip Racing (MWR) when he captured the NASCAR Camping World East Series title on Friday evening at Dover International Speedway. Truex drove his No. 00 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota to an eighth-place finish in the Sunoco 150. The top-10 result enabled Truex to win the championship over Eddie MacDonald by a 34-point margin.
"I just have to thank everyone at NAPA and Michael Waltrip Racing,” said Truex. “Everyone on my team is incredible and I especially want to thank Michael Waltrip, Ty Norris and my crew chief Mike Greci for making all of this possible. I can't believe we won this title. We struggled during the first two races of the season so to come back and win the championship is phenomenal."
Truex, the 17-year-old brother of Martin Truex Jr., and development driver for MWR, produced solid results over the course of the 11-race schedule. His first season in NASCAR’s top development series equated to three wins, seven top-five and eight top-10 finishes.
Truex started the Sunoco 150 in sixth position and drove a conservative race. He kept MacDonald in his sights while also working with his team to improve the handling on his No. 00 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota.
"We started out tight," elaborated Truex. "The NAPA team made some changes during our pit stop and it helped. From there on out, we just tried to keep the car clean and get to the finish."
The Mayetta, N.J. native was quick to realize the magnitude of what he had accomplished.
"To be the first champion at MWR means the world to me," continued Truex. "I really love racing for these guys. It’s such a great place to work. They consistently give me great cars.
"Hopefully, we'll win a lot more titles together."
Truex and the rest of the NASCAR touring series champions will be honored at the Touring Series Gala in Concord, N.C., on Saturday, Nov. 14.
The NASCAR Camping World Series will be back in action for the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown on Jan. 29 and 30 at the Toyota Speedway in Irwindale (Calif.).