Published on May 14th, 2008 | by Michael J Smith1
Truex Isn't Going Anywhere
With Carl Edwards reportedly re-upping with Roush Fenway Racing, Greg Biffle and Martin Truex Jr. may be the hottest potential free agents this year. While Bobby Labonte hasn’t officially announced that he has renewed with Petty Enterprises, that’s most likely the case, so that leaves Biffle and Truex.
Where are they going to end up in 2009? It seemed pretty evident about two weeks ago that both were going to stay with their respective teams. DEI reportedly picked up Truex’s option while Biffle all but said that he was staying with Roush.
But, that was two weeks ago. Now, the Truex-DEI deal has yet to be finalized, and Biffle’s last place finish had him singing a different tune.
Does that mean both of these drivers will end up someplace different in 2009? Possibly, but I doubt it…at least for Truex.
It’s hard to walk away from the company that gave you your first break. Truex isn’t exactly a high profile driver, nor does he have the attitude of one. That alone will make it difficult for him to walk away from Dale Earnhardt Inc. He has a history there, and two Nationwide (Busch) series championships there. In his racing life, he only knows DEI. He’s forged all of his racing relationships there. So, I think he stays.
You could argue that Dale Earnhardt Jr. was in a similar situation last year. The difference is, absent the ownership stake and the rocky relationship with Teresa, Dale Jr. is expected to win, expected to be a champion. Could he do that at DEI? No.
Truex can win. He will probably win this year. But, can he win a championship? No, not yet. Can DEI build championship cars? No, not yet. So what’s the incentive to leave? Jr. had expectations to live up to that forced his hand. Truex does not.
Also, Truex has a very good relationship with Bass Pro Shops, so that’s just another reason to stay.
Look for Truex and DEI to finalize a deal soon that locks up Truex for, at least, a little while longer.