Jamie McMurray Wins the Pole in California; Team Chevy Drivers Score Six of the Top-10 Starting Positions for Auto Club 500 Fontana, Calif -- Jamie McMurray rolled right from victory lane in the Daytona 500 to the pole position for Sunday's Auto...
Jamie McMurray Wins the Pole in California; Team Chevy Drivers Score Six of the Top-10 Starting Positions for Auto Club 500
Fontana, Calif -- Jamie McMurray rolled right from victory lane in the Daytona 500 to the pole position for Sunday's Auto Club 500 in Fontana, California. It is the fourth Coors Light Pole Award for the driver of the No. 1 Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Impala and his first pole at the two-mile Auto Club Speedway.
McMurray's Earnhardt Ganassi Racing teammate Juan Pablo Montoya will start his No. 42 Target Impala alongside after setting the second fastest time in today's qualifying.
Six Team Chevy drivers captured top-10 starting positions for the 250-lap/500-mile race. Clint Bowyer put his No. 33 Cheerios/Hamburger Helper Impala fielded by Richard Childress Racing in the third starting spot. Kevin Harvick in the RCR No. 29 Shell-Pennzoil Impala will start in the sixth position.
Four-time defending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe's Impala will start seventh and his Hendrick Motorsports teammate Mark Martin, No. 5 GoDaddy.com Impala, captured the 10th starting position.
In total, 15 Chevy Impala drivers will take the green flag for Race No. 2 of the 2010 season.
Kasey Kahne (Ford) and Dave Blaney (Toyota) completed the top-five qualifiers.
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA, NO. 42 TARGET IMPALA, QUALIFIED 2ND: TALK ABOUT YOUR LAP:
"I got loose out of turn four. I had a really good lap going and when it stepped out, I had to lift a little bit, not much. Just lifted, but it dragged all the speed out of the car. I was a little bit disappointed. It should have been a really good lap. Still P2, so I can't complain. It is exciting. Jamie (McMurray) won last week. He is going to be on pole this week, that is the kind of momentum this team needs. It is huge."
IT LOOKS LIKE MOMENTUM IS WORKING FOR BOTH TEAMS: "It is still very early. We have gone through one race, one qualifying, let's be patient here and see what happens here but it looks very promising."
JAMIE MCMURRAY, NO. 1 BASS PRO SHOPS/TRACKER BOATS IMPALA, POLE SITTER:
YOU GOT OUT OF THE CAR AND SAID "INSANE" AND THEN STARTED TALKING ASTROLOGY? "I think this says a lot about Earnhardt Ganassi Racing and the cars that they build back there. Certainly thanks to everybody back at the shop. With me first and Juan second, I am really excited. I am a little bit shocked. After winning the 500, we were really good here when we unloaded but...(JUAN PABLO MONTOYA WALKS UP) Juan has been a really good teammate. It is amazing. It is just really good race cars.
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA INTERJECTS: "Yes they are. They're insane to drive. I got sideways out of four and I thought 'Oh, I'm going to be like eighth'. I felt really good in one and two, I nailed them. Three, good, I nailed it. I am getting close to the fence and lost a ton of time there and I thought OH."
MCMURRAY: "I really ran my lap and I thought that would be a top-15 probably because it just didn't feel that great."
MONTOYA: "No, it didn't feel that great. The cars are fast.
MCMURRAY: "The cars have a lot of speed, good engines."
ARE YOU TIRED FROM YOUR WHIRLWIND WEEK AFTER WINNING DAYTONA? IT DIDN'T SHOW IN THAT LAP: "Actually, I am pretty tired but I just have really good race cars. I am thankful to Bass Pro Shops and Earnhardt Ganassi Racing. It is amazing that both of us are on the front row. It says so much about the guys back at the shop."
JPM SAID HE GOT REALLY LOOSE OUT THERE, TALK ABOUT YOUR LAP: "He thought his car was too loose and I thought mine was too tight. When you come to a place like this, the corners are so big and the straightaways are so long, you feel like if don't have a perfect balance, you are not going to be able to have that fast of a lap time. So, neither one of us thought we had anything for the pole. The race cars are so good right now. I am certainly really appreciative of being here and getting to be a part of this."
WAS THE WIND A FACTOR? "It has been in the past but the wind is so calm today that it won't be a big deal."
CLINT BOWYER, NO. 33 CHEERIOS/HAMBURGER HELPER IMPALA, QUALIFIED 3RD:
TALK ABOUT YOUR LAP OUT THERE: "It was pretty good, it felt fast. We ran a lot of practice in race trim and I think we have a really good car. We were pretty pleased with it before we switched over to qualifying trim. So far so good for the Cheerios/Hamburger Helper Chevrolet."
KEVIN HARVICK, NO. 29 SHELL-PENNZOIL IMPALA, QUALIFED 6TH:
TALK ABOUT YOUR LAP OUT THERE: "It was a decent lap out there. Got a little bit too free up off of two and just had to pedal it just a little bit. Good through three and four, but decent lap. It is going to be a lot better starting spot than some of the qualifying efforts we had last year. That was one of our biggest goals going in to this year was to qualifying to where you could be in the front part of the field. We always feel like we race a lot better than we qualify so that is going to be a positive."
JIMMIE JOHNSON, NO. 48 LOWE'S IMPALA, QUALIFIED 7TH:
TALK ABOUT YOUR QUALIFYING EFFORT: "We went so early but it drove well and we seem to be off to a good start. We did a little of both, qualifying and race setup in practice so at least we had some type of baseline for the race if we get rained out. With all the things we have learned over the winter, we wanted to make sure we had a couple of laps on our race stuff."
MARK MARTIN, NO. 5 GODADDY.COM IMPALA, QUALIFIED 10TH:
TALK ABOUT YOUR QUALIFYING EFFORT: "Our car was really really awesome today. Just a little tight on the last run and I told the crew about it. I was a little concerned, but I really wasn't worried, the back end just didn't hook up on that run so I wasn't able to get on the gas like I had. Kind of a disappointment because we felt like we had a shot at the pole. Might have should left it alone. Sure felt different than the first run of practice."
-source: gm racing