Martin Truex Jr. leads all but 12 miles, wins Coca-Cola 600

From The Marbles

Hey, Martin Truex Jr. won a race.

He more than won Sunday's Coca-Cola 600. He absolutely kicked everyone's butt. Truex set a NASCAR record for the most miles led in a Sprint Cup race as he led all but 12 of the 600 miles in Sunday's Coca-Cola 600.

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Despite Truex's dominance, you can't fault yourself from wondering if Truex would fail to reach victory lane. After all, he hadn't won through the first 12 races of the year despite missing out on possible wins at Texas and Kansas, getting caught in a crash at the front of the field at Dover and losing the Daytona 500 in historic fashion.

[Related: Quick takeaways from the Coca-Cola 600]

Hell, Truex was whooping the field so much during the race that we came up with this bingo card of possible ways he could lose. He didn't.

"I had confidence, I had faith," Truex said. "I had confidence in my team. [Girlfriend Sherry Pollex] she gives me a lot of inspiration. We just keep fighting. We never give up. We never quit. We always keep digging."

It's the fourth win of Truex's career and his second in the last two seasons. He won at Pocono last July on his way to making the final round of the Chase for the Sprint Cup. He also becomes the fifth Joe Gibbs Racing driver to win this season alongside Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch, Carl Edwards and Matt Kenseth.

OK, so Truex drives for Furniture Row Racing. But the team formed a technical alliance with JGR before the 2016 season and works so closely with the four-car team that it's essentially a satellite operation.

Jimmie Johnson finished second and Kevin Harvick was third as they battled for the win in the "Non-Truex Jr." class. Johnson said he was incredibly impressed with Truex and his car after the two drivers battled for the lead on the race's final restart. Johnson tried to keep Truex pinched to the bottom but couldn't clear him.

Johnson almost got completely in front of Truex at one point down the backstretch but Truex simply motored on by.

"I kind of felt like he was playing with us," Johnson said. "He was so fast. I would flat-foot [turns] 1 and 2 and have a nose on him and we would drive right back by me into turn 3."

The win means Truex is virtually guaranteed a spot in the 16-driver Chase, though it would have been a major upset if he didn't make it anyway. Despite coming so agonizingly close to winning through the first third of the season, Truex still entered Sunday night's race ninth in the points standings.

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Nick Bromberg is the editor of From The Marbles on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at nickbromberg@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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