Denny Hamlin was the fastest after being the last truck to go out in qualifying this afternoon with a time of 19.625 seconds, 96.489 mph. He earned his first career pole in the series after making 16 previous starts. Earlier in the day, he also won the pole for Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup race.
“I didn’t know what our first lap was, I knew it wasn’t good,” said Denny Hamlin. “Our truck was kind of skating all over the place. Really, this track goes through a weird transition where it’s almost better if the sun is out. I knew that getting heat in the tires was going to be the challenge. I didn’t think it was going to be good enough for the pole when I ran it. We felt like we were a little better in practice than that. Our time was a little better.”
Last week’s winner, Johnny Sauter ended up second on the qualifying sheet after a solid lap of 19.627 seconds, 96.479 mph. Sauter was just 0.002 seconds slower than the pole sitter. It will mark his sixth top-10 start this year, and goes into this weekend looking for his fourth win of the season.
Darrell Wallace, Jr. was the highest qualifying rookie who will start tomorrow’s race in the third position. Wallace posted a fast lap of 19.644 seconds, 96.396 mph. This will mark ninth top-10 start after 19 races of the season.
Series points leader Matt Crafton will start back in the 13th position with a 19.830 second lap.
Two drivers failed to make the field for the Kroger 200. Those two drivers include: Spencer Gallagher No. 21 and Jennifer Jo Cobb No. 10.