How did Martin Truex Jr. spend the week prior to his second-place finish at Bristol? By hanging with fisherman extraordinaire Mike Iaconelli, pictured above. The two fished together last fall in Charlotte, and bonded over a love of worm-drowning and memories of their shared home of New Jersey:
"There's not many of us who have made it out of Jersey," Truex said. "I'm doing okay here racing and he's doing pretty good touring as a bass fisherman. It was cool to fish with him and meet him. He's a down-to-earth guy. He was cool and we're both Phillies fans too, so that helps."
Iaconelli, for his part, toured Bristol with Truex and hung around various media sessions and other garage activities, getting a feel for the only sport that crams more ads per square inch into its competitors' regalia.
And, of course, Iaconelli spent a little time at Bristol doing what he does best: fishing, as you can see above, pulling a 13-inch smallmouth bass out of the stream alongside the track. Yikes. That thing is probably already beer-battered.
Below, from last fall, a shot of Iaconelli and Truex with their various rides and spoils of victory.
Truex needed to throw a prize like that into Brad Keselowski's car before Bristol. He would've won then for sure.