STEELE WINS TALLADEGA POLE POSITION FOR MOUNTAIN DEW 500k TALLADEGA, Ala. (April 25) -- Tim Steele of Coopersville, Mich., won the pole position Thursday for Saturday's Mountain Dew 500k ARCA Bondo/Mar-Hyde Supercar Series stock car race...
STEELE WINS TALLADEGA POLE POSITION FOR MOUNTAIN DEW 500k
TALLADEGA, Ala. (April 25) -- Tim Steele of Coopersville, Mich., won the pole position Thursday for Saturday's Mountain Dew 500k ARCA Bondo/Mar-Hyde Supercar Series stock car race at Talladega Superspeedway. Steele, the 1993 ARCA champion, turned a lap of the 2.66-mile track in 49.826 seconds, an average speed of 192.189 mph, in the HS Die/CIMLINC Ford Thunderbird. He was the 29th of 35 drivers who attempted to qualify for Saturday's event. He bumped defending ARCA champion Andy Hillenburg of Harrisburg, N.C., off the pole. Hillenburg ran a lap of 191.781 mph in the ACDelco Chevrolet owned by NASCAR Winston Cup Series driver Ken Schrader. Harris DeVane of Cuthbert, Ga., in the Georgia Peanut Conmision Ford (191.214); Doug Reid of Hueytown, Ala., in the Long Lewis Ford (190.344); and Mark Thompson of Cartersville, Ga., in the Midway/Phoenix Ford (190.023) rounded-out the top five qualifiers. The top 25 starters for Saturday's 12 p.m. (Central) event were locked-in on Thursday. The 40-car starting lineup will be filled in second round qualifying at 9:30 a.m. (Central) on Friday morning.
KEVIN RAY (No. 2 Zack's Mesquite Grill Chevrolet) -- We had faster practice times. I think everyone will slow down a little bit. The wind's blowing now and it's a little warmer. As long as we're in the top 10 that's what matters. My car does better in the draft. We got a good drafting car and that's going to help us out.
JACK SPRAGUE (No. 44 Quaker State 4x4 Chevrolet) -- We've got another motor coming and we're going to change it in the morning. Look's like we'll end up all right but we've hurt it (motor) somehow. We're nowhere near as fast as we tested. I don't know what we've hurt -- we think it's in the motor. We'll just have to change it and see how it goes.
DENNIS CONNOR (Crew chief No. 44 Quaker State 4x4 Chevrolet) -- We've been hearing about this being a Hendrick Motorsports R&D deal. What this is is a NASCAR Craftsman Truck team running an ARCA (Bondo/Mar-Hyde) race to get Jack Sprague some experience racing at Talladega. This is a car that's been sitting in the corner at the Hendrick Motorsports shop. We'll probably pool crew members from all three (Hendrick) NASCAR Winston Cup teams to pit the car on race day. If this race goes well, we may try to take this car to Charlotte for the ARCA race. Things are going well for us as a (truck) team, having just won at Phoenix (Chevrolet Desert Star Classic 300 last Sunday).
ANDY HILLENBURG (No. 52 ACDelco Chevrolet) -- We won the (Bondo/Mar-Hyde Supercar Series) championship, we've won some races but we've never won a pole. It sure would be nice to get one.
TIM STEELE (No. 16 HS Die/CIMLINC Ford) -- It's not as simple as just holding the accelerator down... In practice we kept a close eye on what the tachometer was doing in the corners. We were losing about 300 RPM. What you try to do is scrub off as little RPM's as you can, so we kept working on that, refining our lines until we only lost about 50 RPM's. Coming off turn four coming down to take the green I was looking at the tach saying 'this is gonna be a good lap.' Now we're gonna try to lead every lap and win this thing. We feel good about it.
DOUG REID (No. 05 Long Lewis Ford Ford) -- We could've been a little better but I think that we tried to get the car a little too quick. The car is brand new and we didn't have a lot of practice with it. It has just 12 laps on it. We really can't be disappointed because we did make the top five and we're really happy to be running up front.