LAS VEGAS – Martin Truex Jr., the 2017 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion, and his longtime girlfriend Sherry Pollex have been named recipients of the National Motorsports Press Association’s Myers Brothers Award for 2017.
The award, named in honor of former NASCAR competitors Billy and Bobby Myers, was presented Nov. 29 during the annual Myers Brothers Awards program held at the Encore Theater of the Wynn Las Vegas.
Truex, driver of the No. 78 Toyota for Furniture Row Racing, and Pollex were honored not only for their continued charitable work revolving around childhood and ovarian cancer through the Martin Truex Jr. Foundation, but for their many accomplishments in the face of adversity. The couple have displayed tremendous strength and concern for others while Pollex has fought her own personal battle with ovarian cancer.
Truex said winning the award took him by surprise. He said he had lingered backstage after he and crew chief Cole Pearn collected a series of awards for winning the championship. Then came his moment of realization during the Myers Brothers Award introductory remarks.
“I was like, ‘Wait a minute, I think he’s talking about us. And then it was, ‘Oh, no,’ ” Truex said. “Good thing I had a few minutes to take some deep breaths because I was about to get emotional. I saw (Sherry) and I knew she was going to be emotional.
“It was very difficult but what an unbelievable honor for us. It’s not (easy), but it’s part of us. It’s who we are. It’s emotional for sure, especially when you start talking about what she’s been through. It pulls at your heart strings.”
This past year, Truex and Pollex hosted the eighth annual Catwalk for a Cause, a charitable fashion show/benefit that raises funds and awareness while celebrating children and teenagers who have beaten or continue to fight cancer. The ’17 program raised more than $500,000.
In addition to their Catwalk program, the past two years have seen the couple launch the “Drive for Teal & Gold” campaign through the month of September to also raise funds and create awareness for ovarian and childhood cancers.
Pollex is the daughter of former NASCAR team owner Greg Pollex; Truex has competed full time in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series for 12 seasons. His eight victories in 2017 was a career best for the 37-year-old and the series title was his first.
Truex was named on 82 percent of the ballots cast for this year’s award. Others receiving votes were Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series team owner Jack Roush and seven-time champion Jimmie Johnson.
The Myers Brothers Award is determined by a vote of the NMPA membership. It recognizes individuals and/or groups who have provided outstanding contributions to the sport of stock car racing and has been presented annually since 1958.
Here is the complete list of Thursday’s award winners from the NASCAR NMPA Myers Brothers Awards Luncheon:
- NMPA Myers Brothers Award: Martin Truex Jr. and Sherry Pollex
- Buddy Shuman Award: Bruton Smith
- NASCAR Marketing Achievement Award: FOX Sports and NBC Sports
- Chevrolet Lifetime Achievement Award: Dale Earnhardt Jr.
- American Ethanol Green Flag Restart Award: Martin Truex Jr.
- Coors Light Pole Award: Kyle Busch
- Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company Award: Martin Truex Jr.
- Ingersoll Rand Power Move Award: Ryan Newman
- MAHLE Clevite Engine Builder of the Year Award: Toyota Racing Development
- Mechanix Wear Most Valuable Pit Crew Award: Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 team
- Mobil 1 Driver of the Year Award: Kyle Larson
- MOOG Go the Extra Mile Crew Chief of the Year Award: Tony Gibson, crew chief No. 41 Stewart-Haas Racing team
- Sherwin-Williams Fastest Lap Award: Kyle Busch
- Sunoco Diamond Performance Award: Martin Truex Jr.
- Comcast Community Champion of the Year: Chip Ganassi Racing Pit Crew Department
- Sunoco Rookie of the Year Award: Erik Jones
- Champion Crew Chief Award: Cole Pearn