Logano Takes Pole For Sunday’s Pocono 400
Posted by: Candice Corrigan, follow @candicecorrigan
June 9, 2012
Joey Logano was able to maneuver “The Tricky Triangle” on Saturday during qualifying for Sunday’s Pocono 400. He took the top spot with a new track record speed of 179.598 mph. Logano currently sits 16th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup points standings, but has been dominant in the Nationwide Series this year, winning three of last four races.
The new track pavement has been the “unknown” factor going into this weekend. Teams were able to test earlier in the week and also at a Goodyear tire test back in April. Logano’s concerns about the new surface earlier this week didn’t seem to interfere with his qualifying run today.
“There’s a lot of things we are worried about,” Logano said. “ I think once the track widens out, the race will get better and all that. I think the track is going to be a lot different from practice to the race.”
Teams nor NASCAR expected the track to change dramatically between yesterday’s practice sessions and this morning’s qualifying runs. As Scott Riggs began his first qualifying lap around the track, he alerted NASCAR to the large amount of quick dry, which is used to clean up fluid spills on the racing surface, in turn one. The new surface that was supposed to produce a lot more grip than the old had Riggs’ car skidding through turn one, out of the racing groove.
NASCAR delayed qualifying for 45 minutes to clean up the slick spot, which apparently came from an ARCA car’s blown engine yesterday.
The slickness and unpredictability of the track dramatically decreased expected qualifying speeds. Still, 36 cars broke the track record qualifying times. The only car to not qualify was David Stremme’s Inception Motorsports machine.
Notable qualifying efforts came from Paul Menard, who qualified third – his best of the season. Also, Stacy Compton, a former Truck Series standout, qualified for his first Cup Series race since 2003.
Jimmie Johnson’s qualifying run was inconsistent with his recent hot streak. The five-time champion will start from the 24th position on Sunday.
For tomorrow’s 400 mile race on the 2.5 mile track, the slickness in turn one is expected to wear as more cars put rubber on the track. Tire wear is questionable as teams predict that the cars will actually be faster on older tires. This could bring some interesting calls in the pits as teams experiment with the new surface.
David Reutimann will sit in for Kurt Busch tomorrow while Busch serves his suspension for penalties incurred after last weekend’s Nationwide Series race at Dover. Reutimann qualified the Phoenix Racing no. 51 in the 25th position for Sunday’s race.
NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Qualifying Order for the Pocono 400
|1||20||Joey Logano||Toyota||The Home Depot||179.598||50.112||Leader|
|2||99||Carl Edwards||Ford||Kellogg’s / Cheez-it||178.866||50.317||-0.205|
|3||27||Paul Menard||Chevrolet||Menards / Sylvania||178.582||50.397||-0.285|
|5||11||Denny Hamlin||Toyota||FedEx Express||178.543||50.408||-0.296|
|6||55||Mark Martin||Toyota||Aaron’s Dream Machine||178.228||50.497||-0.385|
|7||78||Regan Smith||Chevrolet||Furniture Row / Farm American||178.158||50.517||-0.405|
|8||88||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet||National Guard / Diet Mountain Dew||177.939||50.579||-0.467|
|10||5||Kasey Kahne||Chevrolet||Farmers Insurance||177.823||50.612||-0.500|
|11||1||Jamie McMurray||Chevrolet||Banana Boat||177.658||50.659||-0.547|
|13||16||Greg Biffle||Ford||3M / Rite Aid / NextCare||177.518||50.699||-0.587|
|14||17||Matt Kenseth||Ford||Ford EcoBoost||177.501||50.704||-0.592|
|15||83||Landon Cassill||Toyota||Burger King Real Fruit Smoothies||177.204||50.789||-0.677|
|16||15||Clint Bowyer||Toyota||5-hour Energy||177.026||50.840||-0.728|
|18||39||Ryan Newman||Chevrolet||Haas Automation||176.852||50.890||-0.778|
|19||22||AJ Allmendinger||Dodge||Shell / Pennzoil||176.803||50.904||-0.792|
|20||31||Jeff Burton||Chevrolet||The Armed Forces Foundation||176.658||50.946||-0.834|
|22||14||Tony Stewart||Chevrolet||Mobil 1 / Office Depot||176.419||51.015||-0.903|
|23||56||Martin Truex Jr.||Toyota||NAPA Auto Parts||176.160||51.090||-0.978|
|24||48||Jimmie Johnson||Chevrolet||Lowe’s / Kobalt Tools||176.149||51.093||-0.981|
|25||51||David Reutimann||Chevrolet||Phoenix Construction Services||176.074||51.115||-1.003|
|27||47||Bobby Labonte||Toyota||Bubba Burgers||175.576||51.260||-1.148|
|28||119||Mike Bliss||Toyota||Humphrey Smith Racing||175.387||51.315||-1.203|
|29||43||Aric Almirola||Ford||Transportatio-n Impact||175.159||51.382||-1.270|
|30||98||Michael McDowell||Ford||Presbyterian Healthcare System||175.073||51.407||-1.295|
|31||2||Brad Keselowski||Dodge||Miller Lite||174.880||51.464||-1.352|
|32||249||J.J. Yeley||Toyota||America Israel Racing / JPO Absorbents||173.943||51.741||-1.629|
|33||87||Joe Nemechek||Toyota||AM / FM Energy Wood & Pellet Stoves||173.869||51.763||-1.651|
|34||34||David Ragan||Ford||Taco Bell||173.853||51.768||-1.656|
|35||26||Josh Wise*||Ford||MDS Transport||173.497||51.874||-1.762|
|36||38||David Gilliland||Ford||ModSpace / TRG Motorsports||173.240||51.951||-1.839|
|37||93||Travis Kvapil||Toyota||Burger King / Dr Pepper||171.854||52.370||-2.258|
|38||23||Scott Riggs||Chevrolet||North Texas Pipe||171.520||52.472||-2.360|
|39||74||Stacy Compton||Chevrolet||Turn One Racing / Country Suites||171.155||52.584||-2.472|
|41||32||Reed Sorenson+||Ford||Herr Foods / Hero Energy Shot||-||-||-|
|42||10||Dave Blaney+||Chevrolet||Tommy Baldwin Racing||-||-||-|
|43||33||Stephen Leicht*||Chevrolet||Little JoesAutos.com||170.345||52.834||-2.722|
|Did Not Qualify|
|44||30||David Stremme||Toyota||Inception Motorsports||170.004||52.940||-2.828|
Posted: June 9th, 2012
Categories: Featured, Nascar Sprint Cup Series, Results, Track News.
Tags: David Reutimann, Jimmie Johnson, Joey Logano, Kurt Busch, NASCAR, Nascar Sprint Cup Series, Paul Menard, Phoenix Racing, Pocono Raceway, Qualifying, Scott Riggs, Stacy Compton, Tricky Triangle