Just when you thought he wouldn’t pull it off, Martin Truex Jr. just got his car across the line fast enough to win the Goodyear 400 pole award. Truex Jr. did it in very impressive fashion as most drivers from his qualifying group suffered slower times in the final round. A big Saturday for the NASCAR driver.
When Group A went for qualifying, they laid down some solid times. Bubba Wallace led that group. Then Group B went and they put down some even faster times. However, that didn’t last going into the final round of qualifying.
With the ten finalists selected, the cars from Group A were dominant. That was until Martin Truex Jr. came down the track and showed he knows just how to dance with The Lady in Black.
As Martin Truex Jr. came across the finish line, he was just ahead of Wallace’s 29.040. That No. 19 Auto-Owners Insurance Toyota Camry TRD got around the 1.336-mile track with incredible speed. 29.028. That means Sunday is going to be an all-Toyota front row.
Between the Group B qualifying session and the final session, Denny Hamlin went over to Bubba Wallace’s car to check on his tires. According to the driver-owner, there was a big difference and that could be all the difference in these qualifying results.
The 19 car didn’t have any issues with tires, though. Truex already has two wins at Darlington in his career. Could he add a third on Sunday?
Martin Truex Jr. sets the pace at Darlington
There were some interesting performances during qualifying. Of course, Mratin Truex Jr. winning the pole is the biggest story from this session. However, let’s not overlook the hard work that Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and the JTG Daugherty Racing team have put into this weekend.
Stenhouse Jr. will start P3 on Sunday. With some solid starting position, could Stenhouse be a threat to win on Sunday?
It was also very interesting what we saw with Kyle Larson and Denny Hamlin. Both drivers fell off by a considerable amount between the first round and the final round. Sometimes those tires get ate up more than you think.
Martin Truex Jr. is on the pole for the first time since New Hampshire last July. With a win already under his belt, the 2017 Cup Series champion might have another checkered flag in him this weekend.