Date: Oct. 30, 2015
Event: Qualifying for the Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 (Round 33 of 36)
Series: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
Location: Martinsville (Va.) Speedway (.526-mile oval)
Pole Winner: Joey Logano of Team Penske (19.215 seconds at 98.548 mph)
SHR Lineup: Kevin Harvick (12th, 19.452 seconds at 97.347 mph in final round)
Tony Stewart (13th, 19.344 seconds at 97.891 mph in second round)
Kurt Busch (15th, 19.362 seconds at 97.800 mph in second round)
Danica Patrick (16th, 19.375 seconds at 97.734 mph in second round)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the No. 4 Outback Chevrolet SS, led the four-car Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) contingent Friday at Martinsville (Va.) Speedway by setting the 12th-fastest lap in qualifying for Sunday’s Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. Harvick turned a lap of 19.452 seconds at 97.347 mph on the .526-mile oval in the final round of knockout qualifying.
“It was just too tight in round three,” said Harvick, who won at Martinsville in April 2011.
Qualifying consisted of three rounds. The first was 20 minutes, with every driver on the track vying to set the fastest lap. The 24 fastest drivers from the first round advanced to the second, 10-minute round. The fastest 12 drivers from that session advanced to the final, five-minute round of qualifying where they battled for the pole. Positions 1-12 were set by speeds in the final round. Positions 13-24 were set by speeds in the second round. The remaining 43-car field was set by speeds posted by those who did not advance past the first round.
Tony Stewart, driver of the No. 14 Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1 Chevrolet SS for SHR, qualified 13th with a time of 19.344 seconds at 97.891 mph.
“I’m pretty happy with the Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1 Chevrolet we have here this weekend,” said Stewart, a three-time Sprint Cup winner at Martinsville (October 2000, April 2006 and October 2011). “Just a little too tight on that last run but that is a pretty good start for us and I think we have a good car for Sunday.”
Kurt Busch, driver of the No. 41 Monster Energy Chevrolet SS for SHR, qualified 15th with a time of 19.362 seconds at 97.800 mph.
“We struggled rolling the center in qualifying trim,” said Busch, who has two Sprint Cup wins at Martinsville (October 2002 and March 2014). “The later we went in each attempt, the looser the Monster Energy Chevrolet was. I feel good about our car in race trim. We’ll keep working on it and I think we’ll be good come Sunday.”
Danica Patrick, driver of the No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet SS for SHR, qualified 16th with a time of 19.375 seconds at 97.734 mph.
“My GoDaddy team did a good job today,” said Patrick, who will make her sixth Sprint Cup start at Martinsville on Sunday. “We made gains from the first round of qualifying to the second and got ourselves a decent starting spot for Sunday.”
Joey Logano led the final round of knockout qualifying by taking the pole with a lap of 19.215 seconds at 98.548 mph. It was his 14th career Sprint Cup pole, his sixth of the season and his second at Martinsville.
Martin Truex Jr. will start on the outside of row one after clocking in at 19.227 seconds at 98.487 mph.
The 10 other drivers who made it to the final round of qualifying were A.J. Allmendinger, Jamie McMurray, Jeff Gordon, Kyle Busch, Ryan Newman, Aric Almirola, Kyle Larson, Denny Hamlin, Brad Keselowski and Harvick. All are listed in the order they’ll start Sunday’s race.
The Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 gets underway at 1:15 p.m. EST Sunday with live coverage provided by NBCSN.