Hamlin wins 18th occupation pole
By: Al Pearce on March 14, 2014
LAT PHOTOGRAPHIC – Denny Hamlin won the pole for Sunday’;s NASCAR Sprint Cup race in Bristol.
Denny Hamlin embraced a “minimalist” method on Friday afternoon to win the pole for Sunday afternoon’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway. At the year’s initial “knockout” qualifying on a quick track, the Toyota driver was third-fastest on his only lap in the first session, then won the pole at a record 129.981 mph on his only lap in the second and final session.
Driving for Joe Gibbs Racing, he beat former series champions Brad Keselowski and Matt Kenseth, Joey Logano, Marcos Ambrose, former champion Jeff Gordon, Kyle Busch, Greg Biffle, Ryan Newman, Kasey Kahne, reigning champion Jimmie Johnson, and Carl Edwards. It was Hamlin’s 18th profession pole and his 2nd at the half-mile, large-banked bullring in eastern Tennessee.
When Hamlin produced his only lap in the initial session, he climbed from his vehicle and watched most of the rest of the discipline run to the finish of the session. Right after working third in that session, he had absolutely no cause to go back out and abuse the only set of tires he would get. He approached the second session in exactly the very same method: 1 lap was sufficient, and he watched the rest of the session with his crew from the pits.
“I manufactured a single mock qualifying run [late in the 90-minute practice session], so I believed I knew what I had,” he explained. “I was going to make a second lap throughout the very first session, but the very first a single felt so great I knew I did not need to have an additional 1, it wouldn’t have been much better. I knew if that wasn’t a leading-twelve lap, we had been in massive trouble. The identical issue with the last session. I was contemplating about generating a 2nd lap, but the very first 1 felt so good that I knew I did not want one more 1. The car was excellent in qualifying, but I’;m really excited about how good it is in race trim.”
All 45 drivers ran the first thirty-minute session, which looked specifically like an ordinary, everyday, regimen Sprint Cup practice session. The quickest 12 from that session sophisticated to the 10-minute session amid themselves. These 12 will start off the 500-lapper from the very first 6 rows, with starters 13-43 gridded on the basis of their speeds in the first session.
These first 12 integrated (in buy) Logano, Gordon, Hamlin, Newman, Kyle Busch, Johnson, Keselowski, Biffle, Ambrose, Kahne, and Kenseth. Between the drivers who barely missed the cut: Kurt Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Clint Bowyer, David Gilliland, and Jamie McMurray.
Between many other individuals, Logano was impressed by Hamlin’s 2-lap method that took into account tire put on and a slight overcast. “Denny’s technique was pretty great,” he conceded. “I felt very good when I won the initial session. It was like, ‘OK, we discovered one thing between practice and qualifying.’ I felt we did what we have been supposed to do to go out and give it a shot for the pole. But truly and truthfully, Brad’s automobile had been a minor more rapidly than mine nowadays.”
Friday’s qualifying was the initial since NASCAR permitted teams to use an external method to great their engines among runs and between qualifying sessions. Now, as an alternative of vehicles operating “Miss Daisy” laps on the inside to amazing their engines ahead of going for yet another speed lap, teams can attach a cooling unit on pit street. “The rule change created qualifying even better,” Keselowski mentioned. “It’s removed danger and replaced it with chance, which I consider is a optimistic-good. I’m quite happy with that rule as it stands right now.”
David Reutimann and Dave Blaney missed the discipline, and 6 drivers took provisionals to make the display: Tony Stewart, Brian Vickers, Travis Kvapil, Ryan Truex, Parker Kligerman, Joe Nemechek, and Timmy Hill.
Bristol Qualifying Benefits
1. (11) Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 129.991 mph.
2. (2) Brad Keselowski, Ford, 129.965.
3. (twenty) Matt Kenseth, Toyota, 129.073.
4. (22) Joey Logano, Ford, 128.83.
5. (9) Marcos Ambrose, Ford, 128.727.
6. (24) Jeff Gordon, Chevrolet, 128.245.
7. (18) Kyle Busch, Toyota, 128.159.
8. (16) Greg Biffle, Ford, 127.946.
9. (31) Ryan Newman, Chevrolet, 127.801.
8. (5) Kasey Kahne, Chevrolet, 127.69.
eleven. (48) Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 127.385.
12. (99) Carl Edwards, Ford, 127.073.
13. (41) Kurt Busch, Chevrolet, 128.322.
14. (88) Dale Earnhardt Jr., Chevrolet, 128.271.
15. (15) Clint Bowyer, Toyota, 128.245.
sixteen. (38) David Gilliland, Ford, 128.236.
17. (one) Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet, 128.168.
18. (26) Cole Whitt, Toyota, 127.929.
19. (34) David Ragan, Ford, 127.903.
20. (42) Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, 127.792.
21. (17) Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ford, 127.682.
22. (47) A J Allmendinger, Chevrolet, 127.648.
23. (43) Aric Almirola, Ford, 127.605.
24. (95) Michael McDowell, Ford, 127.605.
25. (13) Casey Mears, Chevrolet, 127.597.
26. (3) Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 127.529.
27. (4) Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet, 127.444.
28. (27) Paul Menard, Chevrolet, 127.436.
29. (78) Martin Truex Jr., Chevrolet, 127.351.
30. (51) Justin Allgaier, Chevrolet, 127.343.
31. (40) Landon Cassill, Chevrolet, 127.182.
32. (98) Josh Sensible, Chevrolet, 127.174.
33. (23) Alex Bowman, Toyota, 127.165.
34. (7) Michael Annett, Chevrolet, 126.896.
35. (36) Reed Sorenson, Chevrolet, 126.645.
36. (10) Danica Patrick, Chevrolet, 126.628.
37. (14) Tony Stewart, Chevrolet, Proprietor Points.
38. (fifty 5) Brian Vickers, Toyota, Owner Points.
39. (32) Travis Kvapil, Ford, Owner Factors.
forty. (83) Ryan Truex, Toyota, Owner Factors.
41. (thirty) Parker Kligerman, Toyota, Proprietor Points.
42. (66) Joe Nemechek, Toyota, Owner Factors.
43. (33) Timmy Hill, Chevrolet, Owner Factors.
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