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NASCAR Cup: Kyle Busch takes second-straight pole

Kyle Busch (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

Kyle Busch (photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR)

By AMANDA VINCENT

Kyle Busch claimed his second-straight Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series pole Friday, turning in a 50.237-second/179.151 mph lap in the third of three rounds of qualifying at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa., to take the pole for Sunday’s Pocono 400. It’s his third-career pole at Pocono.
“So far, so good, and to come out here gives us the number one pit selection and gives us the track position to start, but we have to keep it up,” Busch said.
Busch is without regular crew chief Adam Stevens and two other regular crew members as they begin their four-race suspensions after a wheel fell off the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota during last weekend’s race at Dover (Del.) International Speedway.
“I think it just shows the way Adam Stevens is able to prepare his team and his cars and the work that goes on back at the shop with the guys,” Busch said. “This whole team is lined up with good personnel and Adam chooses all that and Joe (Gibbs, car owner) gives us all the right tools in order to be successful.”
The Pocono front row mirrors the Dover front row, as Martin Truex Jr. claimed his second-straight front-row starting spot.
“It was definitely a trying day,” Truex said. “We didn’t get much practice in. We were having all kinds of power steering issues, and I think, we only made a total of four laps, and none of them were very good. Definitely took a few runs, there, to get my marks down and get a little faith in the car and what it was doing and where I needed to put it, and we got faster each round. Second two weeks in a row stings, but it’s a good starting spot for Sunday.”
Busch’s Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, Matt Kenseth, qualified third to give Toyota the top-three spots on Sunday’s starting grid.
Busch was fast throughout the three-round qualifying session. His pole-winning lap in the third round was the only qualifying lap over 179 mph. He also was the fastest in round two with a 40.425-second/178.483 mph lap.
Kyle Larson, after being fastest in the day’s only practice session, was fastest in the opening round of qualifying with a 50.385-second/178.625 mph lap. He wound up seventh after round three, fastest among the Chevrolets.
Here’s the compete starting grid for Sunday’s Pocono 400 at Pocono Raceway:
Row 1 — Kyle Busch (No. 18 Toyota), Martin Truex Jr. (No. 78 Toyota)
Row 2 — Matt Kenseth (No. 20 Toyota), Ryan Blaney (No. 21 Ford)
Row 3 — Kurt Busch (No. 41 Ford), Brad Keselowski (No. 2 Ford)
Row 4 — Kyle Larson (No. 42 Chevrolet), Jamie McMurray (No. 1 Chevrolet)
Row 5 — Joey Logano (No. 22 Ford) Ryan Newman (No. 31 Chevrolet)
Row 6 — Michael McDowell (No. 95 Chevrolet), Kevin Harvick (No. 4 Ford)
Row 7 — Paul Menard (No. 27 Chevrolet), Daniel Suarez (No. 19 Toyota)
Row 8 — Erik Jones (No. 77 Toyota), Darrell Wallace Jr. (No. 43 Ford)
Row 9 — Austin Dillon (No. 3 Chevrolet), Denny Hamlin (No. 11 Toyota)
Row 10 — Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Chevrolet), Clint Bowyer (No. 14 Ford)
Row 11 — A.J. Allmendinger (No. 47 Chevrolet), Trevor Bayne (No. 6 Ford)
Row 12 — Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (No. 17 Ford), Danica Patrick (No. 10 Ford)
Row 13 — Chase Elliott (No. 24 Chevrolet), Kasey Kahne (No. 5 Chevrolet)
Row 14 — Ty Dillon (No. 13 Chevrolet), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (No. 88 Chevrolet)
Row 15 — Chris Buescher (No. 37 Chevrolet), Matt DiBenedetto (No. 32 Ford)
Row 16 — David Ragan (No. 38 Ford), Cole Whitt (No. 72 Chevrolet)
Row 17 — Gray Gaulding (No. 23 Toyota), Landon Cassill (No. 34 Ford)
Row 18 — Corey LaJoie (No. 83 Toyota), Reed Sorenson (No. 15 Toyota)
Row 19 — Jeffrey Earnhardt (No. 33 Chevrolet), Cody Ware (No. 51 Chevrolet)
Row 20 — Derrike Cope (No. 55 Chevrolet)
Follow Auto Racing Daily on Twitter @AutoRacingDaily or like Auto Racing Daily on Facebook (facebook.com/autorcngdaily). Amanda’s also on Twitter @NASCARexaminer and has a fan/like page on Facebook (facebook.com/nascarexaminer)

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Posted by on June 9, 2017. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,NASCAR. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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