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NASCAR Cup: Kyle Larson on pole at Sonoma

DOVER, DE – MAY 05: Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 DC Solar Chevrolet, sits in his car during practice for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series AAA 400 at Dover International Speedway on May 5, 2018 in Dover, Delaware. (Photo by Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)

By AMANDA VINCENT

A 75.732-second/94.597 mph lap in the second of two rounds of Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series qualifying at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway on Saturday garnered California native Kyle Larson the pole for Sunday’s Toyota/Save Mart 350, the first road-course race of the season. The pole is Larson’s second pole of 2018, 16 races into the season, and his second at Sonoma in five attempts.

“I think the first round, I just wanted to get a fairly smooth lap in and not make any mistakes to try to get into the top-12. I felt like I ran a clean lap, but I felt there were areas I could make up some time — a lot in the breaking zones — and I feel like I made up most of my speed in the final round, there,” Larson said. “So it’s cool to get a pole at my own home track here in Sonoma and DC Solar’s home track as well. Qualifying here is one of my favorite things of the year, so I’m glad we could pick up a lot of time there and get the pole.”

Larson will share the front row of the starting grid with Martin Truex Jr., who qualified second.

“I missed a little bit in turn two, I think,” Truex said. “I missed my line a little bit and bumped the corner a little bit more than I would have liked to, and I was a little late getting back to the gas, there. I think I lost some time exiting two. Overall, it was a really good lap. Really good weekend so far aside from the little bit of front end damage. Our 5-hour Energy/Bass Pro Shops Camry has been really fast. I feel like we have a really good race car, better than we do qualifying; that’s off to a good start for us tomorrow. Excited to race here. I love this place, and hopefully, we can get it done tomorrow.”

Truex was the only non-Chevrolet driver to qualify in the top-five. Joining fellow-Chevrolet driver Larson in the top-five starting positions. Chase Elliott qualified third and will share the second row with Larson’s Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Jamie McMurray. A.J. Allmendinger qualified fifth.

Allmendinger was the fastest in the opening round of qualifying with a 75.828-second/94.477 mph lap. And just as he trailed only Larson in the final round of qualifying for the pole, Truex was second to fastest Allmendinger in round one.

Below, is the complete starting grid for the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway:
Row 1 — Kyle Larson (No. 42 Chevrolet), Martin Truex Jr. (No. 78 Toyota)
Row 2 — Chase Elliott (No. 9 Chevrolet), Jamie McMurray (No. 1 Chevrolet)
Row 3 — A.J. Allmendinger (No. 47 Chevrolet), Kevin Harvick (No. 4 Ford)
Row 4 — Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Chevrolet), William Byron (No. 24 Chevrolet)
Row 5 — Kyle Busch (No. 18 Toyota), Brad Keselowski (No. 2 Ford)
Row 6 — Ryan Blaney (No. 12 Ford), Joey Logano (No. 22 Ford)
Row 7 — Trevor Bayne (No. 6 Ford), Ryan Newman (No. 31 Chevrolet)
Row 8 — Paul Menard (No. 21 Ford), Daniel Suarez (No. 19 Toyota)
Row 9 — Alex Bowman (No. 88 Chevrolet), Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (No. 17 Ford)
Row 10 — Clint Bowyer (No. 14 Ford), Erik Jones (No. 20 Toyota)
Row 11 — Denny Hamlin (No. 11 Toyota), Michael McDowell (No. 34 Ford)
Row 12 — Kurt Busch (No. 41 Ford), Aric Almirola (No. 10 Ford)
Row 13 — Chris Buescher (No. 37 Chevrolet), Kasey Kahne (No. 95 Chevrolet)
Row 14 — Austin Dillon (No. 3 Chevrolet), David Ragan (No. 38 Ford)
Row 15 — Gray Gaulding (No. 23 Toyota), Matt DiBenedetto (No. 32 Ford)
Row 16 — Ty Dillon (No. 13 Chevrolet), Cole Whitt (No. 72 Chevrolet)
Row 17 — Justin Marks (No. 15 Chevrolet), Parker Kligerman (No. 96 Toyota)
Row 18 — Darrell Wallace Jr. (No. 43 Chevrolet), Chris Cook (No. 51 Ford)
Row 19 — Tomy Drissi (No. 00 Chevrolet), Cody Ware (No. 52 Chevrolet)

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Posted by on June 23, 2018. Filed under Breaking News,Featured,Monster Energy NASCAR Cup,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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