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Truex On Pole For 600

| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Friday, May 27 2016
Martin Truex Jr. is on pole at Charlotte Motor Speedway. (RacinToday/HHP file photo by Harold Hinson)

Martin Truex Jr. is on pole at Charlotte Motor Speedway. (RacinToday/HHP file photo by Harold Hinson)

By Deb Williams | Senior Writer
RacinToday.com

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Martin Truex Jr. edged Sprint All-Star race winner Joey Logano for the Coca-Cola 600 pole in qualifying Thursday at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

The No. 1 starting position was Truex’s first at the 1.5-mile track, his second this season and the ninth of his career.

“We were not that good in practice and made a lot of changes throughout this qualifying session,” Truex said. “I liked what I felt (in my car) last year and I’ve been thinking about this race a lot since then. We had a really good car that day and thought we were going to go to victory lane and got beat on fuel mileage.”

Truex recorded a 192.328-mph lap, 28.077 seconds, in a Toyota, while Logano’s Ford was clocked at 192.007 mph, 28.124 seconds. Third went to Ricky Stenhouse Jr., also in a Ford. It was Stenhouse’s best qualifying performance since Kansas 2013.

“The last couple of years have been rough,” said Stenhouse, who posted a 191.428-mph, 28.209-second lap. “I felt like I could do it, but we weren’t getting it done on the race track. I feel like I belong here and I know what I’m doing.”

   Toyota and Ford monopolized the first six positions in qualifying, with Ford claiming four and Toyota two. Jimmie Johnson was the highest qualifying Chevrolet, coming in seventh quickest at 190.282 mph, 28.379 seconds.

Three drivers that were in the top five after first round qualifying failed to advance to the final round. They were Ryan Blaney, Kurt Busch and Kyle Busch, who ended up 18th, 13th and 16th, respectively.

Chase Elliott was the top qualifying rookie, claiming the 12th starting position. His Chevrolet was clocked at 187.963 mph, 28.729 seconds.   

Dale Earnhardt Jr., Matt Kenseth, Austin Dillon and Kasey Kahne failed to earn top 24 starting positions. Earnhardt Jr. will start 25th in Sunday’s race, Kenseth 27th, Dillon 28th and Kahne 29th.

After qualifying, NASCAR announced that three teams received their fourth warning Thursday during inspection and, therefore, would make their pit stall selections last on Saturday. They were the teams of Johnson, Earnhardt Jr. and Aric Almirola. NASCAR spokesman Kerry Tharp said Almirola’s team had two warnings entering the Charlotte event. The body on the No. 43 Ford then failed template pre-qualifying inspection twice and laser inspection twice on Thursday. Johnson’s team had three warnings entering the event. The No. 48 Chevrolet failed template pre-qualifying inspection twice. Earnhardt Jr.’s team also had three warnings entering Charlotte. The body on the No. 88 Chevrolet failed template pre-qualifying inspection twice.

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NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Qualifying – Coca-Cola 600

Charlotte Motor Speedway

Concord, North Carolina

Thursday, May 26, 2016

  1. (78)  Martin Truex Jr., Toyota, 192.328 mph.
  2. (22)  Joey Logano, Ford, 192.007 mph.
  3. (17)  Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Ford, 191.428 mph.
  4. (11)  Denny Hamlin, Toyota, 191.388 mph.
  5. (2)  Brad Keselowski, Ford, 190.968 mph.
  6. (16)  Greg Biffle, Ford, 190.503 mph.
  7. (48)  Jimmie Johnson, Chevrolet, 190.282 mph.
  8. (4)  Kevin Harvick, Chevrolet, 190.268 mph.
  9. (19)  Carl Edwards, Toyota, 189.853 mph.
  10. (6)  Trevor Bayne, Ford, 189.587 mph.
  11. (27)  Paul Menard, Chevrolet, 189.162 mph.
  12. (24)  Chase Elliott #, Chevrolet, 187.963 mph.
  13. (41)  Kurt Busch, Chevrolet, 190.114 mph.
  14. (31)  Ryan Newman, Chevrolet, 189.927 mph.
  15. (47)  AJ Allmendinger, Chevrolet, 189.853 mph.
  16. (18)  Kyle Busch, Toyota, 189.820 mph.
  17. (13)  Casey Mears, Chevrolet, 189.820 mph.
  18. (21)  Ryan Blaney #, Ford, 189.807 mph.
  19. (10)  Danica Patrick, Chevrolet, 189.527 mph.
  20. (43)  Aric Almirola, Ford, 189.274 mph.
  21. (14)  Tony Stewart, Chevrolet, 189.188 mph.
  22. (34)  Chris Buescher #, Ford, 188.673 mph.
  23. (1)  Jamie McMurray, Chevrolet, 188.508 mph.
  24. (42)  Kyle Larson, Chevrolet, 187.931 mph.
  25. (88)  Dale Earnhardt Jr., Chevrolet, 188.851 mph.
  26. (15)  Clint Bowyer, Chevrolet, 188.659 mph.
  27. (20)  Matt Kenseth, Toyota, 188.534 mph.
  28. (3)  Austin Dillon, Chevrolet, 188.515 mph.
  29. (5)  Kasey Kahne, Chevrolet, 188.376 mph.
  30. (44)  Brian Scott #, Ford, 188.016 mph.
  31. (7)  Regan Smith, Chevrolet, 187.480 mph.
  32. (95)  Michael McDowell, Chevrolet, 187.266 mph.
  33. (38)  Landon Cassill, Ford, 187.201 mph.
  34. (83)  Matt DiBenedetto, Toyota, 186.955 mph.
  35. (23)  David Ragan, Toyota, 186.780 mph.
  36. (98)  Cole Whitt, Chevrolet, 185.586 mph.
  37. (30)  Josh Wise, Chevrolet, 183.181 mph.
  38. (46)  Michael Annett, Chevrolet, 183.088 mph.
  39. (32)  Jeffrey Earnhardt #, Ford, 180.717 mph.
  40. (55)  Reed Sorenson, Chevrolet, 179.432 mph.
| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Friday, May 27 2016
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