Kyle Larson, driving the #42 Target Chevrolet, won his first Coors Light Pole Awards for the 41st Annual GoBowling.com 400, at Pocono Raceway and he is the 13th different pole winner of the 2014 season. Larson bested Denny Hamlin’s previous record of 181.415 mph/49.610 seconds, set in June 2014, with a record lap speed of 183.438mph/49.063 seconds.
Larson is the first NASCAR Drive for Diversity graduate to win a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series pole award, his first in 25 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series pole. This is the second Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate to win the Coors Light Pole this season with the first rookie being Austin Dillon for the Daytona 500.
“I had butterflies going into that last round,” Larson said. “I knew we had a shot at the pole after the second round, but I was nervous. I felt I hit all three corners about as good as I could and barely edged out Joey (Logano), which feels great because he’s been fast in qualifying.”
This will be the second time the #42 Target Chevrolet will start from the pole with Larson driving, at Richmond International Raceway, qualifying was rained out which ended with the drivers line up based on practice times.
This is the 15th different track qualifying record set for the 2014 season. Last season 19 of 32 track records were broken with the Gen-6 car.
Larson beat out the Penske duo of Logano, driving the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, and Brad Keselowski, driving the #2 Alliance Truck Parts Ford, Logano held the top spot during the first two rounds of qualifying and finished just eight thousandths of a second slower for the final round with a time of 183.408mph/49.071 seconds.
“Kyle (Larson) definitely laid down a good one because I thought my lap was damn near perfect and I got beat,” said Logano, this is Logano 17th time to post a top 10 qualifying run in 21 races for 2014. “Anytime you win the first two sessions, you feel pretty good about what you’re gonna have in the third and we ran the third session really hard.”
“I was pretty confident, really, really confident that, that was going to be the pole,” said Logano.
The 41st GoBowling.com 400 from Pocono Raceway will be televised on ESPN, Sunday August 3, with the race coverage beginning at 1 p.m. ET.