Truex Nabs the Pole at Martinsville

by Tucker White On Fri, Oct. 28, 2016

Martin Truex Jr. poses with the pole award after winning the pole for the Goody's Fast Relief 500 at Martinsville Speedway. Photo: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images

MARTINSVILLE, Va. – Martin Truex Jr. will lead the field to the green flag on Sunday afternoon after posting the fastest time in the final round of qualifying.

The driver of the No. 78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota scored the pole for the Goody’s Fast Relief 500 after posting a time of 19.282 and a speed of 98.206 mph.

“I’m feeling good, it’s definitely a good day,” Truex said on getting the pole. “It’s fun to be back at the race track with some positive things happening. First pole here at Martinsville so it feels good, it’s a cool accomplishment and this track is so difficult and so tough. The history here and it’s just a place that everybody wants to be good at. Really proud of my guys after the week we had last week. Obviously to come here, perform and get it done – I’m excited to see what we can do the rest of the weekend.”

It’s his 12th pole in 402 career Sprint Cup Series starts, his fifth of the season and first in 22 starts at Martinsville Speedway.

Joey Logano will start second in his No. 22 Team Penske Ford after posting a time of 19.290 and a speed of 98.165 mph. Jimmie Johnson will start third in his No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet after posting a time of 19.354 and a speed of 97.840 mph. AJ Allmendinger will start fourth in his No. 47 JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet after posting a time of 19.376 and a speed of 97.729 mph. Chase Elliott will round out the top-five in his No. 24 HMS Chevrolet after posting a time of 19.382 and a speed of 97.699 mph.

Tony Stewart will start sixth in his No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet. Carl Edwards will start seventh in his No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota. Denny Hamlin will start eighth in his No. 11 JGR Toyota. Kyle Busch will start ninth in his No. 18 JGR Toyota. Jeff Gordon will round out the top-10 in his No. 88 HMS Chevrolet.

His 10th place qualifying effort snaps a 23-year streak with at least one pole in a season.

Kyle Larson will start 11th and David Ragan will round out the 12 drivers that made the final round of qualifying.

Matt Kenseth will start 17th, Kevin Harvick will start 20th and Kurt Busch is the lowest starting Chase driver in 23rd.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. wheel-hopped going into turn 1, spun around and hit the wall with his left-rear corner. The damage prompted the team to roll out their backup car. As a result, he’ll start from the rear of the field on Sunday.

“I had a lot of wheel-hop,” Stenhouse said on what happened. “It was definitely not ideal in qualifying, but you’re always pressing the issue to try to qualify better and trying to get everything out of the car that you can and it just started wheel-hopping. As a lot of us drivers know, once it starts wheel-hopping it’s hard to save. I down-shifted to try and keep it out of the wall as best I could, but we weren’t able to do that. We’ll get this Fastenal back-up out and get to work on it tonight and make sure that we have it ready to go for practice tomorrow.”

With 40 cars entered, none were sent home.

In total, 21 Chevrolet’s, 11 Ford’s and eight Toyota’s will comprise the 40-car field in Sunday’s Goody’s Fast Relief 500.

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