Friday, March 22, 2013

Denny Hamlin wins Coors Light Pole Award at Auto Club Speedway

Denny Hamlin seemed unaffected by the controversy that surrounded him this week as he put the No. 11 FedEx Camry on the pole at Fontana with a speed of 187.451 mph and a time of  38.410. The top four positions all ran in the 38.4 range with Greg Biffle's 38.458 good enough for the front row.

Unfortunately, the No. 16 3M Window Film Fusion blew an engine in practice so Biffle will drop to the back of the field, as will third-place Brad Keselowski. The Blue Deuce didn't blow an engine but the No. 2 team made the change just to be on the safe side since the two-mile track keeps RPMs high for almost the whole 400 miles.

Kyle Busch, who earned fourth position but will start the race beside teammate Hamlin, holds the track record from 2005 with a 38.248 at 188.245 mph. Matt Kenseth put the third JGR car up front with his fifth-place effort and will start behind Hamlin.

Only 43 cars attempted to qualify, so there were no DNQs.

Hamlin earned the 13th pole of his nine-year Cup career, his third at Fontana. He'll be making his fourth top-ten start of the season.

The highest qualifying rookie was Ricky Stenhouse Jr. in 31st.

Position Driver
1 Denny Hamlin
2 Greg Biffle
3 Brad Keselowski
4 Kyle Busch
5 Matt Kenseth
6 Joey Logano
7 Martin Truex Jr.
8 Tony Stewart
9 Mark Martin
10 Kurt Busch
11 Casey Mears
12 Juan Pablo Montoya
13 Clint Bowyer
14 Kevin Harvick
15 Dale Earnhardt Jr.
16 Kasey Kahne
17 Jamie McMurray
18 Jimmie Johnson
19 Jeff Gordon
20 Ryan Newman
21 Marcos Ambrose
22 Jeff Burton
23 Aric Almirola
24 Carl Edwards
25 Bobby Labonte
26 AJ Allmendinger
27 Paul Menard
28 David Reutimann
29 Dave Blaney
30 Josh Wise(i)
31 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #
32 David Stremme
33 Travis Kvapil
34 David Gilliland
35 Michael McDowell
36 Landon Cassill
37 JJ Yeley
38 Scott Riggs
39 Timmy Hill #
40 Danica Patrick #
41 Mike Bliss(i)
42 David Ragan

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