NNS: Paul Menard claims pole for O’Reilly Auto Parts 300

April 13, 2012 No Comments

Credit: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images for NASCAR

Paul Menard, driving for Richard Childress Racing in the No. 33 Chevrolet, won the pole position for Friday night’s O’Reilly Auto Parts 300 from Texas Motor Speedway.

Menard’s lap of 29.72 seconds/ 181. 714 mph was the fastest of all the 45 cars that took time on Friday afternoon.

Denny Hamlin, who qualified second, had an unconventional qualifying lap.

Each driver is allowed a warm-up lap, and then two green flag laps to try and put down the fastest lap possible. Instead of getting up to speed right away, Hamlin was slow through the first half lap on the first of his two green flag laps.

By the time he took the white flag, signaling the last of his green flag laps, Hamlin was fully up to speed and at the time his run was good enough for the provisional pole.

Four drivers later, however, Menard bested Hamlin’s lap to take the pole position. For Menard, it is his first career Nationwide pole at Texas, and his fifth career Nationwide pole of his career.

Ricky Stenhouse  Jr. qualified third to be the top qualifying Ford of the race. The fastest qualifying Dodge was Brad Keselowski who qualified 13th for Friday night’s race.

Rounding out the top-five for tonight’s race are the RCR teammates of Menard, Dillon in fourth and Sadler in fifth.

Morgan Shepherd and John Jackson both failed to make the 43-car field tonight.

The race will start tonight at 8:30 EST. The race can be seen live on ESPN2 or heard on the radio on PRN.

Starting Lineup: 

  1. Paul Menard
  2. Denny Hamlin
  3. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  4. Austin Dillon
  5. Elliott Sadler
  6. Kurt Busch
  7. Cole Whitt
  8. Kasey Kahne
  9. Steve Arpin
  10. Mike Bliss
  11. Brian Scott
  12. Joey Logano
  13. Brad Keselowski
  14. Sam Hornish Jr.
  15. Johanna Long
  16. Justin Allgaier
  17. Danica Patrick
  18. Michael Annett
  19. Ryan Truex
  20. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  21. Kyle Fowler
  22. Jeff Green
  23. Jason Bowles
  24. Mike Wallace
  25. Danny Efland
  26. Timmy Hill
  27. Erik Darnell
  28. Tayler Malsam
  29. Blake Koch
  30. David Ragan
  31. Kelly Bires
  32. Josh Wise
  33. Joe Nemechek
  34. Scott Riggs
  35. Scott Speed
  36. Chase Miller
  37. Jeremy Clements
  38. Tim Schendel
  39. Robert Richardson Jr.
  40. T.J. Bell
  41. Benny Gordon
  42. Eric McClure
  43. Kevin Lepage

 

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