DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Recap by Race Chaser Online New England Correspondent Kyle Souza — Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images for NASCAR photo —
After a day and a half of NASCAR XFINITY Series action at Daytona International Speedway, there is no question that Ty Dillon has the fastest car in the field — at least in single car runs.
Ever since Richard Childress Racing unloaded the No. 3 Bass Pro Shops Chevrolet in Daytona on Friday, Dillon has been either at the top of charts or very close by, and Saturday he continued that roll by sweeping both rounds of Coors Light Pole Qualifying at ‘The World Center of Racing’.
Dillon’s lap in the final round of 49.493 seconds (181.844 mph) was more than a tenth of a second faster than anyone else, giving him his fourth pole in 79 career NASCAR XFINITY Series races and his first pole in six career starts at Daytona.
The younger grandson of team owner Richard Childress believes that his fast start will equal a strong finish in Saturday’s PowerShares QQQ 300 (3:30 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM).
“I think the speed will transfer good, usually if you can stay up in the front here you can avoid some of the mess,” Dillon said. “Every single practice we worked to get speed out of the car and it’s good to show that hard work does pay off.”
Joe Gibbs Racing sophomore contender Daniel Suarez qualified second for Saturday’s Powershares QQQ 300 at Daytona with his lap of 49.612 seconds (181.401 mph), his second front-row start in three career DIS attempts.
“I can’t say enough about these guys,” Suarez said following Saturday’s qualifying session. “The Joe Gibbs Racing guys worked so hard in the winter and I can’t wait for this afternoon.”
His JGR teammate, 2000 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Bobby Labonte, notched a third place effort (49.722/181.006) behind the wheel of the No. 18 NOS Energy Drink Toyota, making his return to the team he brought so much success over a decade prior.
Richard Childress Racing driver Austin Dillon qualified fourth (49.742/180.934) and championship contender Erik Jones (49.771/180.828), rounded out the top five.
Behind them were RCR teammates Brendan Gaughan and Brandon Jones in sixth and seventh, with defending Daytona 500 winner Joey Logano, Blake Koch, Elliott Sadler, Ryan Reed and Darrell Wallace Jr. rounding out the dozen cars who advanced to the pole round.
Just missing the cut for round two was new full-time driver for Chip Ganassi Racing, Brennan Poole — who ran a lap of 50.091 seconds (179.673 mph) and will start 13th as a result.
Other notables just outside the top 12 included Daytona ARCA winner John Wes Townley (14th), JR Motorsports driver Kasey Kahne (15th), Sunday’s Daytona 500 polesitter and Kahne’s teammate Chase Elliott (19th), .
Modified ace Ryan Preece, who is driving his first full-time XFINITY season for JD Motorsports, qualified his TeamJDMotorsports.com Chevrolet in the 31st position.
The NASCAR XFINITY Series goes green at Daytona this afternoon, with live coverage starting at 3 p.m. on Fox Sports 1.
Race Chaser Online will have the latest updates and stories from the race on Twitter (@RaceChaserNews) and Periscope.
RESULTS: NASCAR XFINITY Series; Coors Light Pole Qualifying; Daytona International Speedway; Feb. 20, 2016:
- Ty Dillon
- Daniel Suarez
- Bobby Labonte
- Austin Dillon
- Erik Jones
- Brendan Gaughan
- Brandon Jones
- Joey Logano
- Blake Koch
- Elliott Sadler
- Ryan Reed
- Darrell Wallace Jr.
- Brennan Poole
- John Wes Townley
- Kasey Kahne
- Justin Allgaier
- Kyle Larson
- Dakoda Armstrong
- Chase Elliott
- Matt Tifft
- Jeb Burton
- Benny Gordon
- David Starr
- Aric Almirola
- Ryan Sieg
- Morgan Shepherd
- Bobby Gerhart
- Joe Nemechek
- Anthony Kumpen
- Scott Lagasse Jr.
- Ryan Preece
- Ray Black Jr.
- Eric McClure
- Martin Roy (Provisional)
- Chris Cockrum (Provisional)
- Ross Chastain (Provisional)
- Jeremy Clements (Provisional)
- B.J. McLeod (Provisional)
- Joey Gase (Provisional)
- Jeff Green (Provisional)
DNQ: Mark Thompson, Mario Gosselin, Harrison Rhodes, Derrick Cope, Chris Fontaine, Derek White, Stanton Barrett, Mike Harmon.
About the Writer
Kyle Souza is an aspiring Journalism major at the Roger Williams University in Bristol, R.I. Souza is Race Chaser Online’s New England motorsports insider, covering everything from the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour to the NASCAR Whelen All American Series and the PASS North Super Late Models.
When not writing, Souza works at the Seekonk Speedway as the track’s Friday night public address announcer and press writer, and is also the Media Director for both the Granite State Pro Stock Series and the Tri Track Open Modified Series.
Email Kyle at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow on Twitter: @Kouza34
Email Race Chaser Online: email@example.com
Follow RCO on Twitter: @RaceChaserNews