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Jun 21, 2014 - 05:09 PM
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2014 Sonoma: Chevrolet NASCAR Sprint Cup Qualifying Recap
Posted by: ASkyler on Jun 21, 2014 - 05:07 PM
2014 Sonoma: Chevrolet NASCAR Sprint Cup Qualifying Recap

For the second consecutive year, Jamie McMurray will lead the field to the green behind the wheel of his No. 1 Cessna Chevrolet SS in Sunday’s Save Mart 350 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Sonoma Raceway. McMurray captured the pole with a new track record lap of 74.354 seconds, 96.350 mph, breaking the record of 95.262 mph set in 2012.

This is McMurray’s 10th career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series pole, his first of the 2014 season and third pole in 12 races at Sonoma Raceway. "I was really shocked that we could run fast on our third run," said McMurray. "We made a change, but I’m not sure where that speed came front. That was a really good lap. The biggest thing here is to get off of (turns) 11 and seven with a drive. I really could never get wide open in any gear - first, second or third - off of those corners. We kind of had all the rest of it down. It was a really good lap. I’m excited. It is cool. This is my third road course pole. That is pretty awesome."


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In a two-round knockout qualifying session format, McMurray bumped AJ Allmendinger in his No. 47 Kingsford/Clorox Chevy SS from the top starting spot, who will start on the outside front row next to McMurray. Kyle Larson, McMurray’s rookie teammate, qualified third in his No. 42 Target Chevy SS, giving Chip Ganassi Racing two cars in the top three and Chevrolet a 1-2-3 sweep for the starting grid.

In Sunday’s 43-car field, Team Chevy will occupy nine of the top 12 starting positions. Kurt Bush was fourth quick in his No. 41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, Kevin Harvick will start sixth in the No. 4 Outback/Budweiser Folds of Honor Chevy SS, and Ryan Newman rolls off seventh in the No. 31 Caterpillar Chevrolet SS.

Paul Menard qualified ninth in the No. 27 Richmond/Menards Chevy SS, Danica Patrick starts 11th in her No. 10 GoDaddy Chevrolet SS and Casey Mears qualified 12th in his No. 13 GEICO Chevy SS.

Jeff Gordon, the current series point leader and all-time winner at Sonoma with five victories, qualified his No. 24 Panasonic Chevrolet SS 15th. Dale Earnhardt Jr., with two victories thus far this year, qualified his No. 88 Kelley Blue Book Chevrolet SS 17th, while Hendrick teammate, Jimmie Johnson, winner of three of the last four races, will start from the 22nd position in his No. 48 Lowe’s Chevy SS.

Carl Edwards (Ford) was the fourth fastest qualifier in today’s session, to round out the top five starters.

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