Juan Pablo Montoya Grabs the Pole at New Hampshire; Team Chevy Drivers Score Three of Top-Five and Five of Top-10 Starters for Lenox Industrial Tools 301 Loudon, NH -- Juan Pablo Montoya captured his first pole of the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup...
Juan Pablo Montoya Grabs the Pole at New Hampshire; Team Chevy Drivers Score Three of Top-Five and Five of Top-10 Starters for Lenox Industrial Tools 301
Loudon, NH -- Juan Pablo Montoya captured his first pole of the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) season by putting the No. 42 Target Chevrolet in the number one starting spot of the 43-car field for the Lenox Industrial Tools 301. It is Montoya's second pole at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and the third of his NSCS career.
Team Chevy drivers captured three of the top-five starting positions for Sunday's 301-lap/318.46-mile race. Mark Martin, No. 5 CARQUEST/GoDaddy.com Chevrolet will roll off in the fourth starting position. Ryan Newman will start the No. 39 Haas Automation Chevrolet from fifth on the grid.
Chevrolet drivers in the top-10 after their qualifying runs were Clint ChevroletBowyer, No. 33 Zaxby's in ninth and four-time defending NSCS Chevroletchampion Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe's , landing in the 10th Chevroletstarting position.
A total of 14 Team Chevy drivers will take the green flag for Sunday's race.
Kasey Kahne (Ford) and Kurt Busch (Dodge) complete the top-five starters at the conclusion of qualifying.
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA, NO. 42 TARGET CHEVROLET, POLE SITTER:
TALK ABOUT YOUR QUALIFYING EFFORT TODAY: SEEMS LIKE YOU PICKED UP A LOT ON THAT SECOND LAP. DID IT FEEL FASTER? "No, I think we ran only like a tenth faster on the second lap. I took it really easy on the first lap. Last time we were here the fastest lap was the second lap. So, now we planned on that and it was good. It was a little looser than I expected, so we lost a little time there."
HOW DO YOU THINK YOUR CHEVROLET IS GOING TO RACE ON SUNDAY? "I think this Target Chevy is going to be great on Sunday, so we'll see."
ON THE RUN: "There are very few cars that broke .29 so we were really good in practice. We ran what we ran in practice. I think I could have run a little bit faster. I lost a lot of time going into (Turn) 3. I think I was too conservative and I made a small mistake there, but even like that, we were good. It's just one of those deals when you've got good cars, it's easy."
ON THE PRACTICE SESSION AND THE RACE CAR FOR SUNDAY: "In race trim we were really fast. Last year we were really fast. We need points. Anything that comes this way with points, I'll be very happy."
WERE YOU HAPPY WITH THE LAP? "It was good but it was fast, but I made a couple little mistakes. Like (Turns) 1 and 2 were really nice. We went into (Turn) 3 very smart and I didn't overdrive it, and I was a little too low and I got sideways. That's okay."
ON WINNING THE POLE: "We are looking to finish as high as we can, but we have to finish. We can't afford to get DNFs. We have really fast race cars every week. We've been involved in a lot of wrecks that weren't my fault. It is part of what racing is. The team is working really hard and it is nice to be up front."
MARK MARTIN, NO. 5 CARQUEST/GODADDY.COM CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 4TH:
"I'm just proud of these guys. We've been off a little bit here lately and to come here and to have the speed that we have bodes well for all the races to come. These guys have been working hard and I think they've found some of what we've been missing."
DID YOU EVER SKIP THIS TRACK WHEN YOU WERE RUNNING PART TIME? "Two years. Came back and won the second time but we skipped four races."
LAST TIME YOU WERE HERE YOU WERE IN VICTORY LANE "Yeah, that's pretty cool. I want to thank CARQUEST and GoDaddy.com and the Chevy bunch; they've really worked hard on this thing. We've been off here lately and they just keep digging. We saw that we closed the gap some today and we're really looking forward to tomorrow to try to massage this thing a little bit more and maybe get a little more out of it. But certainly the car is a lot closer to that top speeds than we have been lately. So I'm really proud of this race team. They support me 100 percent."
RYAN NEWMAN, NO. 39 HAAS AUTOMATION CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 5TH:
"So far it's been a good weekend for us. The Haas Automation Chevrolet was good in practice. We struggled a little bit and made it better and got it better in qualifying trim. So we're happy about that. At least I'll have a good starting spot because it is a relatively short race."
WE SAW YOU GET A WIN AT PHOENIX, HOW DOES THAT TRANSFER HERE? "It's different for sure, but it's the same race car. We had the same anticipation at least to come here and try to win with the Haas-Automation Chevrolet and a good qualifying effort. Tony Gibson and the guys did a good job. They give us a good car and we missed it by just a little bit there."
FOR SUNDAY'S RACE, WHAT DO YOU NEED TO WORK ON? "Getting in the corner is a big part of it but getting off is probably more important."
CLINT BOWYER, NO. 33 ZAXBY'S CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 9TH:
"So far, so good. It was a little bit loose there. We needed a little bit of grip up off but it was a decent run for us and we can take that and race good with that. We need a good finish here. It's an important race for us. We need to get things turned around here and this is certainly a track where we can do that."
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE'S CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 10TH:
"Today all I've done is make two-lap runs for qualifying and so far that part has been good. But that doesn't guarantee that we'll have a good run on Sunday."
HAS THIS TRACK CHANGED FOR YOU AT ALL? "It seems to be consistent especially since they resurfaced it. They don't put down the sealer any longer. When the sealer would go down, the older surface track would change from the spring trip to the fall trip here. But any more it's been real consistent."
DO YOU FEEL GOOD ABOUT YOUR CHANCES FOR SUNDAY "I do. This track has been good for us. We've been able to run in the top 10, top five. Hopefully we can bring it in this time for the win."
JEFF BURTON, NO. 31 LENOX INDUSTRIAL TOOLS CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 17TH:
"The track is always a little slicker early in the session. We'll see the track get better and better during qualifying."
YOU ARE A FOUR-TIME WINNER HERE, DO YOU STILL FEEL LIKE YOU HAVE THE FORMULA TO WIN HERE? "I'll tell you on Sunday."
IT WOULD FEEL REALLY GOOD TO VISIT VICTORY LANE HERE AGAIN WOULDN'T IT? "Yeah, it really would. Our team has worked really hard. I feel like we come here with a reasonable opportunity to win the race. It's very difficult to win these races. But I'm real proud of the effort my guys have been giving us. I don't think qualifying is going to be all that great but from when we went out, I think it was a good time."
KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 29 SHELL-PENNZOIL CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 24TH:
ON HIS RUN "It was good the first lap but we were just way too loose the second lap."
IS THIS TRACK REALLY TEMPERATURE SENSITIVE? "Cooler temperatures definitely help the speed, but not as much as other places. But tire temperature is more important than anything."
WILL THE GUYS WITH THE LATER DRAWS BE ABLE TO GET SOME MORE SPEED? "Yeah, I don't think that (his time) will even be close to the front row. It doesn't matter. We got all we could get. The draw didn't help us a whole lot but I think we did about as good as we could have done. So, we're going to get beat up here with the later draw but there's nothing we can do about that. But a draw is a draw. I think we did okay from where we ran in practice to go out that early I thought we did okay. But it will be what it is and we'll make it work on Sunday."
TONY STEWART, NO. 14 OLD SPICE/OFFICE DEPOT CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 25TH:
WERE YOU BETTER ON ONE END VERSUS THE OTHER? "No, it's just slicker now. Our balance is still the same as what we were in practice. We just ran a slower lap because of the heat."
HOW ABOUT YOUR LAP? IS IT GOING TO KEEP YOU UP THERE? "No, I don't think so. The track is a little slicker now but I'm really proud of our guys on this Old Spice/Office Depot team. I was really happy with the way race practice went and then we went into qualifying trim and it was pretty good there too. So, I'm happy with it so far.
"I don't think this is going to be a top five run or anything; being the first car out. But I think where we were at the end of qualifying practice this morning, we've been in race trim and qualifying trim and it felt like we had a pretty reasonable car in both. Don't know where this is going to end up. It was just kind of a bad luck of the draw to go out first, but I think we've still got a really good car for Sunday."
WHAT'S THE KEY TO WINNING HERE ON SUNDAY? "Same as it always is: make it turn in the center and have good forward bite and traction. It's the same as it always is."
-source: gm racing