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Logano Gets The Cup Pole At Infineon Raceway

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Friday, June 24 2011

Joey Logano won the Cup pole at Infineon. (Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR)

RacinToday.com

Joey Logano on Friday won the pole for Sunday’s Toyota/Save Mart 350 Sprint Cup Series race at Infineon Raceway.

Logano posted a lap at 93.256 mph in his Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.

It was his first road course pole and the second pole of his career – the other came at Bristol in 2010.

“I was surprised it was as fast as it was,” Logano said. “I felt like the car had a lot more grip in it, and I felt like we fixed the car, but personally I felt like I screwed up about three times in one lap.  I didn’t feel too good about myself after it and I thought I screwed that one up.  It was good, car was fast.

“We’ll work on our stuff in race trim a little bit more tomorrow and see if we can get our Home Depot car fast.  This is place is so – you can have a fast race car here and it doesn’t mean a whole bunch here.  Obviously your strategy is going to be a big deal and I think the real big deal is staying out of trouble, which is where I need to work on the most than anywhere else.”

Jamie McMurray of Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing was second fastest with a lap at 93.223 mph.

“I was happy with the way that we unloaded today,” McMurray, winless on the season, said. “We’ve really had a tough season; especially after all the success that we had last year. So, it was nice to come here and unload and have a really good car. I think we’ll be in the Top 10 in qualifying and if we can just have the right strategy; the hardest part about Sonoma is not getting collected in someone else’s issue. Turn 7 is always really tough on restarts because guys will dive bomb in there and it might be three rows behind you but if they start wheel-hopping they can’t get stopped. So, it’s a really frustrating track. But I love coming out here. So I’m really happy with our run there.”

Third was Paul Menard in a Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet.

Denny Hamlin, winner of last weekend’s race at Michigan International Speedway and Logano’s teammate, was fourth and Ryan Newman was fifth in a Stewart Haas Racing Chevy.

Rounding out the top 10 were Kasey Kahne, A.J. Allmendinger, Marcos Ambrose, Clint Bowyer and Brian Vickers.

The pressure has been mounting on Logano this season. His teammates – Hamlin and Kyle Busch – have been doing well and Logano has not.

That all made the pole at Infineon all the more sweet.

“It’s really awesome, for sure,” he said. “This is the last place that I figured we’d get a pole.  I think obviously if you’re looking at – I’ve never had a top-10 start here and I’ve never finished that good here either.  After practice, I felt like we needed a lot more forward drive and a lot more side-bite in our car.  Man, they made it happen.  I said, ‘Geeze, should have asked for that a long time ago.’  They definitely did a good job of making our Home Depot car fast.

“I was surprised, I felt like my lap wasokay, didn’t feel like it was stellar by no means.  Man, a hell of a lap.  The last three cars were Kasey (Kahne) who got the pole last year, and Denny (Hamlin), our teammate is really good here, and Kurt (Busch) that was four-tenths faster than everyone else in practice and has gotten the last three poles.  Man, I didn’t know – I didn’t think it was going to hold up – I don’t think of my guys thought it was going to hold up.  We were pretty pumped up right now, we needed a momentum change with our Home Depot team right now.  We’ve been going through a little bit of a drought.  This is definitely going to help us a lot.”

(This story will be updated shortly)

Info Manager | , RacinToday.com Friday, June 24 2011
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