JTG Daugherty Racing driver Ricky Stenhouse Jr. scored his first Daytona 500 Busch Pole Award after turning a lap time of 46.253 seconds (194.582) in the No. 47 Kroger Camaro ZL1 1LE. Stenhouse beat out Alex Bowman for the coveted spot that posted a lap of 46.305 (194.363).
“It’s cool,” said Ricky Stenhouse Jr. “Tad and Jodi (Geschickter) are back at the shop and I just want to thank them, Gordon (Smith) and Brad (Daugherty). I'm thankful for the opportunity to be here and to be able to bring guys with me like Brian (Pattie) and Mike (Kelley). They are in my corner. They have been working really hard and been behind me throughout all my career. Ernie (Cope) runs a great organization and great shop. The Hendrick horsepower was amazing. Obviously, we’ve got a few Hendrick cars lined up behind us. Our Kroger Camaro ZL1 1LE was really strong. The wind started picking up down the back straightaway – a little headwind - for other guys.
“We’re proud to put the Kroger car on the pole on Kroger Pole Day for their Daytona 500," Stenhouse Jr. continued. "That was our goal coming down here. Brian and the guys at the shop have been working hard all season for that goal. The whole shop chipped in. We’ve cut car bodies off and put them back on and this goes out to the shop. They’ve worked Saturdays and worked late nights all for me to come down here to jump in the Kroger car and run fast. Looking forward to continuing the momentum on Thursday.”
This is JTG Daugherty Racing's 12th year competing in the Daytona 500. It's a huge accomplishment for the racing organization and team owner Tad Geschickter is proud of what his team has in store this season.
“Daytona is the place that highlights the strength of the team and how hard everyone works. To be the fastest car there this weekend makes me really happy for everyone that puts in the time. I’m really proud of everyone that works for JTG. For me personally what comes to mind is the partners like Kroger and everyone that stands behind us through thick and thin. We want to create value for all our partners involved and give them what they deserve. Today was a good day.”
This locks in the first two starting positions for the Daytona 500. The rest of the starting lineup will be determined after the Bluegreen Vacations Duel at Daytona on Thursday live from at Daytona at 7 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio
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