SCR: You two seem to have a lot in common. You hit it off real well, and you both have basically the same personality, the same lack of arrogance, and both seem to be very personable. Do you have a lot in common besides the obvious-that you both race for a living?
Truex: Sure, yeah, everything. We like to do all the same stuff, it seems. He doesn't like to fish too much, but I love to fish. That's about the only thing we don't [have in common]. But we just got us a bass boat, so I'm going to take it. It's half his and half mine, but he'll never use it, so it'll be all mine.
SCR: So, you come from an area where you did a lot of fishing, and your family is involved in the clamming business?
Truex: Yeah, we lived right on the shore and I did a lot of fishing growing up, in the bay and stuff.
SCR: The Bass Pro Shop sponsorship really fits your lifestyle?
Truex: Yeah, it's cool. It's a pretty cool sponsor for me.
SCR: I know your dad was a racer, but what kind of influence did he have on you?
Truex: Yeah, he's the only reason I started racing, really. He and my Uncle Barney were racing from the time I can remember, I guess from the time I was born. And I just grew up around it and always loved going to the racetrack and watching, and I always knew it was something I wanted to do. And when I turned old enough-when I was ten-I started begging for a go-kart, and when I was eleven, I finally got one. He was always racing, so I had my mom take me to the track most of the time, or my aunt would take me because my cousin raced with me. He was a year younger than me, and we would all ride to the airport-I mean the racetrack-and I would pretty much do everything myself. My dad taught me a lot about racing and sportsmanship and how races go and how you need to concentrate on making your cars the best you can and that sort of stuff.
At Talladega, Truex Jr. verified...
At Talladega, Truex Jr. verified his racing credentials by winning on a track entirely different from Bristol, where he had notched his first Busch win just four weeks earlier.
SCR: Talk a little about the family clamming business. How much did you work in that growing up?
Truex: When I was still in high school, I would go out on weekends, like most kids go out on weekends, and have a good time and everything. But I would have to wake up at 2 o'clock or 1 o'clock on Sunday morning...well, Saturday night. I would go out Sunday and work all day and come home and go to school on Monday. For probably a year or the last year and a half or so while I was in school, I did that just to make some money. I would make a couple hundred dollars just on weekends. Of course, I was building a truck to put on the road when I got my license, and all that went into it. When I got out of school, I worked a year and a half, I think it was, full time on the boat.
SCR: When did you know that racing was what you wanted to do?
Truex: Before I ever worked on one of them boats, I'll tell you that. It's what I always wanted and kind of what I always worked for. I think I got my Modified when I was about 17 and a half, and started getting it ready, rebuilt it all, and got ready to go racing in a real car.
SCR: Talk about your first Busch win at Bristol earlier this year.
Truex: That was pretty exciting. I kind of knew-well, I can't say I knew, because you never know if you're ever going to win a race-but I felt like we had had a few opportunities to win, like at Homestead last year, and Rockingham this year, and I kind of let them slip away at the end by mistakes I made. Anytime I've ever made a mistake in racing, I've always been one who thinks about it and worries about it so much that it seems to never happen again. I kind of learn from it. That's what I always try to do. I try to learn from every mistake I make. I think that was part of the reason I won Bristol.