Martin Truex Jr., one of NASCAR's biggest stars, has embarked on a new business pursuit. He started a charter plane company that will serve multiple purposes. The planes deliver drivers to races but also transport life-saving organs and surgical teams.
According to AIN, Truex originally acquired a Hawker 400XP in 2014. He had another company manage his airplane at first but later decided to bring the management into his own company, MTJ Group of Companies. Truex decided to get into the charter business and acquired the Part 135 Certificate in June. This certificate provides is essential for companies that wish to conduct operations for compensation.
"Long story short, this is where it came to be the best option, was to do this all myself and hire the right people to run it and at the same time not spend the money I was spending," Truex said to AIN. "It was mostly I have control over everything and [I'm] paying for services I felt I could do better myself."
Truex's charter originally focused on transporting NASCAR drivers, per AIN, but also sought out potential business from corporate or leisure travelers. The COVID-19 pandemic brought this new venture to a halt, however, as millions remained at home and in quarantine. The pause in business prompted a newfound focus on transporting life-saving organs and surgical teams.
"Not only is it very meaningful for us to be involved in that channel of business, but we really didn't adjust our rates at all to service organ transports," said Todd Moore, president of MTJ Group of Companies. "And what we've found is our rates are hypercompetitive in that space and really allowed us to grow fairly quickly. I think it's up to around 50 percent of our business now."
According to Moore, the organ transport flights span the East Coast and move as far west as Texas. The company flies an estimated three to five flights per week currently but that number could soon increase. Moore and Truex have plans on expanding the organ missions.
Along with his charter company, Truex remains busy with the ongoing NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs. He remains in contention for the championship trophy after the latest cutoff race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval. 12 drivers entered the weekend still in the hunt, but only eight remained after the checkered flag. Truex is among this group as he strives to win his first championship since the 2017 season.