Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Déjà Vu All Over Again: Kyle Busch Wins Another Playoff Pole
Stop me if you’ve heard this before: Kyle Busch’s Joe Gibbs Toyota is still wicked fast.
Friday afternoon at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Busch won the pole for Sunday’s ISM Connect 300 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race with a lap of 135.049 miles per hour.
That means Busch will be the pole-sitter for each of the first two Cup playoff races having started P1 last week at Chicagoland Speedway.
“Just went out there and gave it what she had,” said Busch, who won his eighth pole of the season and 27th of his Cup career. “Didn’t think I hit it very well, actually. … That’s pretty cool. These guys have been amazing all year in qualifying.”
It will be an all-Kyle front row, with Kyle Larson putting the Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet on the outside of Row 1, with a lap of 134.911 mph. “I felt like overall my lap was pretty good,” said Larson. “The 18 (Busch) has been really fast recently, especially in qualifying all year. So for us to be second to him is not bad.”
Starting on Row 2 will be Busch’s JGR teammate, Denny Hamlin, who won the first New Hampshire race this season, and Ryan Blaney in the Wood Brothers Racing Ford.
Cup points leader Martin Truex Jr. claimed the fifth spot, flanked by Kevin Harvick.
And in his final New Hampshire race, Dale Earnhardt Jr. qualified 15th.
Eleven of the top 12 qualifiers were drivers in the hunt for the Cup championship, while the remaining five failed to make it out of the second of three qualifying rounds, including Brad Keselowski (13th), Chase Elliott (14th in a backup car), Richard Childress Racing teammates Austin Dillon (17th) and Ryan Newman (18th), and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (24th).