A.J. Allmendinger has earned his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series pole on Friday night at Phoenix International Speedway.
Allmendinger’s lap of 134.675 mph was good enough to capture the front row for Saturday nights Subway Fresh Fit 600. “I knew we were going to be quick. We were quick in practice, but when you go out there you just don’t know how much grip is going to be on the race track.” Allmendinger said. “It is exciting to get that first pole. It is a small victory, but it means so much to this race team and me. In this sport, it is all about confidence. To know we have a good car and to go out there and back it up in qualifying is great. We seemed to be just missing it a little bit each week, so to go out there and get the job done is a big deal.” Scott Speed will share the front row. Sam Hornish Jr. qualified third, Marcos Ambrose fourth and Dale Earnhardt Jr. qualified fifth. “Things are starting off this weekend a little bit better than the last two. I had to shave all the black hair because that seemed to be bad luck. I also named our car, her name is ‘Rattlesnake.’ I think it’s kind of mean and sounds fast. We’re in Phoenix, so it fits. I don’t know which one of those has changed our luck around, but we’ll continue doing all of them.” Speed said. “It was better than I thought it was. All these guys going directly behind us are pretty good race cars. My car drove pretty good. I knew the first lap was the only lap after lap 1 our car would just go away really bad in qualifying trim, so I had to get everything we could and just not make any mistakes that first lap because that was the only opportunity for us. Our car lost a good two or three-tenths on that second lap every time we tried it today.” Earnhardt Jr. said. Series points leader Jimmie Johnson has won four of the last five races at Phoenix, qualified 16th. Denny Hamlin qualified 26th and plans on starting the race. Casey Mears is standing by to take over if needed. Starting Lineup
|3||77||Sam Hornish Jr.||Dodge||134.198||26.826||-0.095|
|5||88||Dale Earnhardt Jr.||Chevrolet||133.64||26.938||-0.207|
|8||56||Martin Truex Jr.||Toyota||133.294||27.008||-0.277|