Ryan Truex and Michael Waltrip Racing: A Winning Combination

Kelsea JordanCorrespondent IApril 15, 2009

Michael Waltrip Racing has added a new winner to the stable. Ryan Truex has just been signed as the driver of the No. 00 Toyota in the Camping World East Series. 

Last year, Truex drove in the last East series race, replacing Jeffrey Earnhardt in the  DEI car, where he finished 11th in his series debut. 

Ryan seems to be following in the footsteps of his older brother Martin, who drives the No. 1 car for Earnhardt-Ganassi in the Cup series. 

Ryan began his season with an impressive showing in his first East series race of the year at Greenville Pickens Speedway this past Saturday. 

The race began with a wreck in Turn One—which Truex managed to avoid—clearing the way for a fairly smooth race and a respectable finish.

Truex held the fifth spot through the first 50 of the 150 lap race. The No. 00 Toyota got tight, causing him to lose time in the turns for the latter part of the race. 

As I watched the 17-year-old navigate the track, I found it hard to believe it was only his second East Series race. 

He drove aggressively and smart, easily holding his own with some of the veterans of the series. This talent landed him a 14th place finish from a field of 29 cars.

Fans waited patiently in the longest autograph line at the track to get a glimpse of this young driver, concurring that he was well on his way to building a successful racing career just as his brother has done.  

They were intrigued and excited about Truex's deal with MWR. Most felt this was a great step for both the team and this driver.

Martin Truex Sr, must be doing something right. He has two sons running competitively in different divisions, and has stated in previous interviews that Ryan is "a near photocopy of Martin Jr."—making this the race family to watch. 

Both drivers have earned their wings by moving through the ranks of NASCAR with solid performances.

Truex Sr. has talked before about the importance of moving through the divisions with consistency.  He certainly seems to have a handle on the making of champions.

His boys are centered, humble and determined, traits which the elder Truex values and has instilled in them. 

MWR may just be the team to keep an eye on this year. Entering his third year as an owner/driver, Waltrip and crew are building up steam and rising in the points standing as they continue to place competitively as the season continues. 

It appears that Waltrip is making all the right moves and building a team to be reckoned with on their way to Victory Lane.