Pocono pivotal to Truex

LONG POND, PA - AUGUST 02:  Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota, prepares to drive during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series GoBowling.com 400 at Pocono Raceway on August 2, 2013 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Will Schneekloth/Getty Images)

LONG POND, PA – AUGUST 02: Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #56 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota, prepares to drive during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series GoBowling.com 400 at Pocono Raceway on August 2, 2013 in Long Pond, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Will Schneekloth/Getty Images)

LONG POND, Pa.–With six races left before the Chase for the Sprint Cup field is set at Richmond, Martin Truex Jr. is one of the “bubble boys.”

Currently 11th in the standings and first among claimants to the two available wild card spots because of his road-course victory at Sonoma, Truex would like to put Pocono in his rear-view mirror after a respectable finish at the 2.5-mile track.

Truex and his Michael Waltrip Racing teammates, Clint Bowyer and Mark Martin, struggled at Pocono in June, but Truex is looking forward to the next five tracks with relish.

“This weekend is definitely important,” Truex told the NASCAR Wire Service after Friday’s practice. “I think if we can get through this race and stay kind of where we are–in touch with the top-10 and only a couple points out of that–I think we’ll be in good shape. We’ve got some great tracks coming up for us.

“Watkins Glen, obviously really looking forward to that after what we did at Sonoma. Atlanta is coming up. It’s one of my favorites. We’ve definitely got some places where we could run well–Bristol has been good for us–so I think we just need to get through this one. I feel like we can get another win before the Chase starts, and we’re going to work hard to try to make that happen.”

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