Jamie McMurray Grabs the Pole at Martinsville

Chip Ganassi Racing driver Jamie McMurray posted a lap of 99.905 mph to grab his second Coors Light Pole Award of the season. It was also his second pole at the famed half-mile paperclip and his 11th career pole.

“We tested here a couple of weeks ago and I thought we had one of the best tests that I’ve been a part of, really since I started racing,” McMurray said. “Really well organized. We made the car better throughout the test and hit on a couple things that really had a lot of speed in it.”

With the pole, McMurray became the second “non-Chase” driver to win a pole during this year’s Chase. Brian Vickers, who claimed the pole at Talladega, was the first to do so.

Joey Logano, the track record holder at Martinsville, just barely missed the top spot. Logano posted a fast lap of 99.605 mph to secure the second starting spot, a time that was only .057 seconds off the pole speed.

Logano talked about coming up just short saying, “I felt like one and two was good, the car did what I wanted to do. Got into three hard, waited in the center before going off. Starting up front is something that you always want to do here. It’s a good starting spot for us on our way to stay out of trouble.”

Chase contender Matt Kenseth will start third, with Tony Stewart and Denny Hamlin rounding out the top-five. Brad Keselowski, Jimmie Johnson, Kyle Busch, Ryan Newman and Kurt Busch will start in positions sixth through 10th, respectively.

Jeff Gordon, an eight-time winner at Martinsville and fastest in the first practice, missed advancing to the second round by .003 seconds and will start 13th.

“I don’t mind starting 13th,” Gordon said. “It’s not a bad place to start. You just want that really good pit stall, and so we’ll definitely suffer with a pit stall a little bit. But we can definitely still win it from there. Our car is really good.”

Kevin Harvick, who struggled with his car’s handling and made contact with the wall during the first round, qualified 33rd.

“We were way too loose,” he said. “We struggled in practice and just missed it in qualifying. We’ll just have to get it better and be ready to go on Sunday.”

The green flag will fall on the Goody’s Headache Relief Shot 500 at Martinsville Speedway on Sunday at 1:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Complete Starting Lineup:

1 1 Jamie McMurray
2 22 Joey Logano
3 20 Matt Kenseth
4 14 Tony Stewart
5 11 Denny Hamlin
6 2 Brad Keselowski
7 48 Jimmie Johnson
8 18 Kyle Busch
9 31 Ryan Newman
10 41 Kurt Busch
11 99 Carl Edwards
12 15 Clint Bowyer
13 24 Jeff Gordon
14 27 Paul Menard
15 47 AJ Allmendinger
16 42 Kyle Larson
17 55 Brian Vickers
18 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr
19 3 Austin Dillon
20 13 Casey Mears
21 16 Greg Biffle
22 51 Justin Allgaier
23 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr
24 5 Kasey Kahne
25 9 Marcos Ambrose
26 78 Martin Truex Jr
27 43 Aric Almirola
28 40 Landon Cassill
29 34 David Ragan
30 10 Danica Patrick
31 36 Reed Sorenson
32 23 Alex Bowman
33 4 Kevin Harvick
34 38 David Gilliland
35 98 Josh Wise
36 26 Cole Whitt
37 7 Michael Annett
38 93 Clay Rogers
39 33 Travis Kvapil
40 83 J.J. Yeley
41 44 Timmy Hill
42 32 Kyle Fowler
43 66 Mike Wallace

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com.

Roger Holtsclaw
Roger Holtsclawhttp://www.nationalmotorsportsnetwork.com
Roger has over 24 years experience as a mechanic and crew member in NASCAR at many levels including Cup, Nationwide and Truck Series. He has also competed as a driver at many short tracks around the Southeast including one start the USAR Hooter's Pro Cup Series. Roger is now embarking on a motorsports journalism and photography career and is co-owner of HMP Photo. Follow me on Twitter @rogerholtsclaw Email me: roger@speedwaymedia.com

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