Martin Truex Jr. will continue to race in the NASCAR Sprint Cup series for Furniture Row Racing in 2016. He won’t be doing it in a Chevy however. The team announced Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway prior to the Sylvania 300 that the Denver Colorado based team will switch to Toyota’s next season. The team will also enter into a technical alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing.
“As we continue our quest to be a contender for this year’s Sprint Cup championship, it’s hard not to feel the excitement and enthusiasm of becoming an integral partner with Toyota next season,” said Joe Garone, president and general manager of Furniture Row Racing who has been with the team since its inception in 2005. “The added resources and technical support that Toyota will provide, along with having a technical alliance with Joe Gibbs Racing, definitely increases the growth potential for our team.”
Furniture Row has raced Chevrolets since the teams founding. It recent years it had an alliance with Richard Childress Racing. Toyota joined the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in 2007 and partnered a year later with Joe Gibbs Racing, The team made its NASCAR debut in 2005, competing in 10 NASCAR XFINITY Series races and two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events that season. The team has qualified for the Chase in two of the last three seasons and was the first single-car team to earn a Chase berth.
“The track record of Toyota and Joe Gibbs Racing speaks for itself,” Garone said “They are both proven winners with an unyielding commitment to raising the performance bar in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.”
Garone said that he and team owner Barney Visser were happy to pick up the contract option for Truex, a Chase qualifier, who is in his second season as the Furniture Row Racing driver. His season totals to date include one win, seven top fives, 17 top-10s and 536 laps led.
“Martin has done a terrific job driving our No. 78 race car to a victory and into the Chase,” said Garone. “He and crew chief Cole Pearn have established an outstanding chemistry. We look forward to having Martin as the Furniture Row Racing driver in 2016 and beyond.”
The 35-year-old Truex said he is ready to rejoin Toyota. He drove a Toyota Camry for four seasons as a member of the Michael Waltrip Racing team from 2010 through 2013. During that time the Mayetta New Jersey native scored one win. He finished eighth Sunday and moved up to ninth in the Chase standings.
“I am happy to continue in my role with Furniture Row Racing and feel that we’ve just begun a growth spurt that will take us to a new level,” said Truex. “It’s a great organization and Barney (Visser, team owner) gives us whatever we need to be successful.”