Larson takes Daytona 500 pole, Villeneuve assured beginning slot - Motor Informed
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Larson takes Daytona 500 pole, Villeneuve assured beginning slot

Larson pipped 2021 poleman and Hendrick team-mate Alex Bowman to safe high spot for the 2022 season opener, the primary points-scoring spherical of NASCAR’s Subsequent-Gen period. 

Larson’s common lap pace within the last spherical was 181.159 mph – the quickest lap recorded in each rounds, after he’d been second quickest within the first runs.

His pole is the eighth consecutive Daytona 500 that a crew powered by a Hendrick engine has began on the pole, and the ninth of the final 10. Nevertheless, a Hendrick driver hasn’t gained the 500 since 2014 when Dale Earnhardt Jr. scored an emotional victory.

“You’re all the time actually happy with your crew anytime you win a pole right here as a result of it has the littlest to do with us drivers,” Larson mentioned.

“Simply an enormous thanks to the engine store at Hendrick Motorsports; all people who’s performed a component in touching these autos, whether or not or not it’s on the pc or hands-on.

“It’s superior, the pace in our Chevy. I imagine it’s the start of a very good weekend.”

Bowman ended up at 181.046 mph and can make a NASCAR document fifth consecutive begin on the entrance row of the season’s largest race. He known as his entrance row streak “unbelievable.”

“I’ve come down right here not locked in, qualifying poorly and having to race our manner in,” he mentioned.

Villeneuve has made the 500 field, and start a Cup race for the first time since 2013

Villeneuve has made the 500 discipline, and begin a Cup race for the primary time since 2013

Picture by: Matthew T. Thacker / NKP / Motorsport Images

“It says a lot about Hendrick Motorsports. Congrats to (Larson) for getting the pole. It’s cool to have the document however I really feel it needs to be (crew chief) Greg Ives and my race crew needs to be those to get the credit score for that document as a result of the driving force doesn’t actually have a lot to do with it.

“Glad I didn’t mess it up for them.”

Fellow Hendrick driver William Byron, who was quickest within the first spherical, slipped to 3rd forward of high Ford driver Aric Almirola – the Stewart-Haas driver making his final 500 begin in his farewell season – as 2020 Cup champion Chase Elliott made it 4 Hendrick Chevrolets within the top-five.

Final season’s Cup Collection runner-up Martin Truex Jr was the best-placed of the Toyotas, operating sixth-quickest for Joe Gibbs Racing, whereas Ross Chastain (Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet), three-time 500 winner Denny Hamlin (JGR), Daniel Suarez (Trackhouse) and rookie Harrison Burton (Wooden Brothers Ford) accomplished the highest 10.

Based mostly having the highest two qualifying speeds amongst non-charter groups, 1997 System 1 world champion Villeneuve (Crew Hezeberg Ford) and Noah Gragson (Beard Motorsports Chevrolet) are assured to start out Sunday’s Daytona 500.

Will probably be Villeneuve’s first begin within the 500, which he final tried to qualify for in 2008 driving a Invoice Davis Racing Toyota, and his first Cup race begin since Sonoma in 2013. 

Greg Biffle, Kaz Grala, Timmy Hill and J.J. Yeley will race in Thursday night time’s qualifying races, battling for 2 remaining spots within the discipline for non-charter groups.

All drivers will race in Thursday night time’s qualifying races to set the sphere for Sunday’s race. Larson and Bowman, nevertheless, are locked into their beginning positions no matter their respective efficiency.

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