SWS: Southwest Series Qualifying at Sears Point

SONOMA - Steve Petty of Walnut Creek, qualifying in the last of five groups, roared around the Sears Point Raceway course Thursday at a track-record average of 97.746 miles an hour in a Ford to capture the pole position for Saturday's SNAP-ON ...

SONOMA - Steve Petty of Walnut Creek, qualifying in the last of five groups, roared around the Sears Point Raceway course Thursday at a track-record average of 97.746 miles an hour in a Ford to capture the pole position for Saturday's SNAP-ON TOOLS/AAA 200, a NASCAR Featherlite Southwest Series race. Petty's lap bettered the lap of 96.516 miles an hour set last June by Bryan Germone. Ross Thompson of Phoenix, Ariz., also bettered the previous track mark with a lap at 97.133 and will start on the front row alongside Petty. Doug McCoun of Prunedale was third at 96.734, followed by Mark Reed of Bakersfield at 96.658 and Jim Inglebright of Fairfield at 96.609. "It's exciting we came out here," Petty said. "It's a home track for us. We wanted to do well. Two years ago, we ran up front and we did real well. Got crashed out. Last year, we sat on the front row and had some bad luck (but) finished sixth." Thompson was returning to Sears Point for the first time in five years. "This is a one-off deal for me," he said. "It's nice to be up front. We got caught up with (another) car. I think we would have had the pole, honestly. He held us up and I had to back out." The top 32 plus two provisionals are locked in from Thursday's qualifying. The remaining eight spots in the field will be decided in a qualifying race this morning. Headlining Friday's schedule at Sears Point is qualifying to decide the top 25 spots for Sunday's Save Mart/Kragen 350 NASCAR Winston Cup race.

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Series NASCAR
Drivers Jim Inglebright , Bryan Germone , Doug McCoun , Steve Petty , Ross Thompson