MONSTER ENERGY NASCAR CUP SERIES
CHARLOTTE MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSE
BANK OF AMERICA ROVAL 400
TEAM CHEVY PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT
SEPTEMBER 27, 2019
WILLIAM BYRON CAPTURES POLE AT CHARLOTTE ROVAL
Five Camaro ZL1 Drivers Qualify in Top 12
CONCORD, NC – (Sept. 27, 2019) – Behind the wheel of his No. 24 UniFirst Camaro ZL1, William Byron took the top position in qualifying for the Bank of America Roval 400 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series (MENCS) race at Charlotte Motor Speedway, with a fast lap of 80.932 seconds, 103.198 mph. The feat was Byron’s fifth pole in 65 MENCS races, his 13th top-10 start in 2019, and his first career pole at the 17-turn, 2.28-mile road course known as the Roval.
This is also the 13th pole of the 2019 season for the Camaro ZL1 and 712th all-time pole for Chevrolet in NASCAR’s premier series.
Alex Bowman was second quick in his No. 88 Nationwide Retirement Plans Camaro ZL1 to seal the 1-2 sweep for Hendrick Motorsports, and the two will start Sunday’s race on the front row of the 40-car field.
Seven-time MENCS champion, Jimmie Johnson, qualified fourth in his No. 48 Ally Camaro ZL1, Kyle Larson was seventh in the No. 42 Clover Camaro ZL1, and Chris Buescher was 12th in the No. 37 Velveeta Camaro ZL1 to give Team Chevy five of the Top-12 in the final 10-minute qualifying session.
Joey Logano (Ford) was third, and Clint Bowyer (Ford) was fifth to round out the top 5 qualifiers.
NBC will telecast the Bank of America ROVAL 400 live at 2:30 p.m. ET Sunday, September 29th. Live coverage can also be found on NBC Sports Gold, PRN and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.
WILLIAM BYRON, NO. 24 UNIFIRST CAMARO ZL1 PRESS CONF. TRANSCRIPT:
TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOUR LAP AND JUST THE EXCITEMENT AROUND TAKING HOME ANOTHER POLE HERE.
“Man, it was really good. We’ve had a really good day here at Charlotte. The first run of practice felt like it went fairly smooth. We were able to do one qualifying run in practice and I felt like I left some on the table there. I just had to kind of go back to the bus and think about it, and go back to the hauler and talk to my guys about it. We changed up a couple of things on the car too. We just kind of made those little improvements, which I feel like led to our success in qualifying all year. It’s just the car getting a little bit better and me getting a little bit better for qualifying. It just all comes together at the same time. We’re really fortunate for that. I almost blew it in the last chicane with locking up the tires, but I knew I had to get in there pretty good. Fortunately, we came out of it with the pole and I’m really excited for Sunday now.”
FIVE POLES IN ONE SEASON. YOU HAD NONE LAST YEAR. OTHER THAN CHAD (KNAUS)
COMING ON BOARD, WHAT HAS BEEN THE DIFFERENCE FOR YOU IN PREPARING FOR FRIDAY’S TO GET THE JOB DONE?
“I think it’s just having the ability to be close with the car and just tune in on the little details. We don’t really panic a lot when it comes to qualifying most of the time. If we’re close, we just try to fine tune. I feel like we do a good job in that space of fine tuning, whether it’s me or the car. We just kind of fine tune the little things and that equals more speed. We knew we had to pick up from practice to probably get the pole and we were able to do that. I think we just put the little details together well.”
THIS IS THE FIRST TIME ANYONE THAT HAS SWEPT THE POLE FOR BOTH CHARLOTTE RACES. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN TO YOU TO MAKE HISTORY LIKE THAT?
“It’s great. The team had 80 percent of the effort in the 600 Pole. We were really close to wide open, if not wide open. This race means a lot to me because I feel like it takes a team effort, for sure. The guys have to bring a good race car and you have to do your homework as a driver. I’m proud of that. It’s shown that we can be at a high level and when we’re on, we’re on. We’ve been able to put together some really good starting efforts and some good race finishes, for sure. We just have to do that on Sunday.”
WE SAW QUITE A FEW ACCIDENTS IN TURN FIVE TODAY. IS THAT A CORNER YOU CAN UNDERESTIMATE AND WHAT IS IT ABOUT THAT CORNER THAT CAN POTENTIALLY CAUSE PROBLEMS THIS WEEKEND?
“It’s a completely flat corner and you’re going probably 125 mph, so if you don’t have your angle right for that or your angle is too much and you yank the wheel, then it spins out. I’ve been fortunate that our car has been pretty stable going into there today. But it’s a place that you can make up lap times for sure going up to turn six. It’s just very flat and unforgiving. I actually made a mistake on iRacing there this week, and I spun out and hit the tires the same way some of those guys did. I think it’s just kind of understanding what kind of speed you can carry into there and knowing that the track isn’t really helping you.”
WITH YOUR STRONG QUALIFYING EFFORTS IN 2019, DOES THAT PUT MORE PRESSURE ON YOU AS A DRIVER FOR SUNDAY?
“Not really. Qualifying is a different beast and you’re just trying to go fast for one lap. The race, as a whole, a number of things add up for the win. It’s just kind of separate things for me, but I’d obviously love to win a race on Sunday and that would help our cause for the Playoffs. I think this is definitely one we are capable of. We just have to go out there and put a whole race together. I feel like we are building momentum throughout this year. Last week was a reality check for us and we kind of came into this week with a little more preparation.”
Team Chevy high-resolution racing photos are available for editorial use.
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