LONG POND, Pa. – This weekend, Mark Martin will make his 50th NASCAR Sprint Cup Series start at Pocono Raceway where he leads all Cup competitors with 19 top-five finishes, 33 top-10s and 40 lead-lap finishes.
“This is one of the most challenging tracks we race on,” said the driver of the No. 5 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet. “It’s not an oval, but it’s not a road course either. So, it kind of doesn’t race like any other track we’re on. As a driver it’s hard out there, but the crew guys have an even bigger job trying to get the GoDaddy.com Chevy dialed in for all three turns. It’s tough. You have to give up a little in one corner to make another one better. It’s just something you’ll fight all day.”
The veteran driver, who has led a total of 444 laps at the 2.5-mile speedway, has taken runner-up honors at Pocono six times. Most recently, Martin finished second on Aug. 1, 2004. The Tricky Triangle is one of only four tracks where he has yet to visit Victory Lane.
“Not winning at a track I’ve raced at so many times could be frustrating, but really I don’t think about it,” Martin said. “I don’t carry around a list of where I haven’t won at, hoping to check them off. When I think of my career I guess I think more of the wins I do have, not the ones I don’t. And of course the people I’ve met and the good times we’ve had.”
This weekend also will feature Martin’s return to the Camping World Truck Series. Martin, who hasn’t competed in the Truck Series since 2007, will get behind the wheel of the No. 32 Turner Motorsports Chevrolet with Hendrick Motorsports horsepower in Saturday’s race at Pocono. In his previous 23 truck starts, Martin has earned seven wins, 16 top-five finishes and 19 top-10s. That race will be televised at 1 p.m. ET on SPEED.
Martin will line up for the Cup event, which will be televised at 1 p.m. ET on ESPN this Sunday.