Saturday, November 6, 2010

Elliott Sadler Claims Texas Sprint Cup Pole

Photo Credit: Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Only three races left in the 2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup season, the Texas Motor Speedway AAA Texas 500 race weekend is one of a dwindling opportunities left for top-level stock car drivers. Not only to capitalize on the Chase for the Cup, some racers of NASCAR's top series are determined to put their name in the news before the season wraps. At Texas Friday, one usually quiet driver piloting a Ford delivered positive result that was much needed for him and his surrounding team. Topping the speed chart after qualifying, Elliott Sadler handsomely beat off two Roush-Fenway Racing Fords of Greg Biffle and Carl Edwards to earn the coveted pole position.

Achieving a 195.397 mile per hour average lap speed around the 1.5 mile oval, Sadler claimed his 8th career Sprint Cup pole which was also his first since April of 2006. Wheeling the Richard Petty Motorsports #19 Ford, the entire four-car race team has been finishing out the NASCAR Sprint Cup of 2010 with uncertainty if a team will even exist in 2011. Elliott Sadler and the #19 Stanley Ford will at least place these parties favourably on the race weekend at Texas Motor Speedway. In addition for the pole position for Sadler, the Virginian is celebrating a newly-signed deal to drive a full-time NASCAR Nationwide Series schedule for Kevin Harvick Incorporated starting in 2011.

A Ford 1-2-3 at Texas, Greg Biffle rested into the runner-up position in qualifying. Biffle's 2nd place with the #16 car for Roush-Fenway Racing was 0.249 seconds off the pace of Sadler's sizzling hot lap. Carl Edward's #99 rounded out the Blue Oval brand's top-three.

Juan Pablo Montoya with the #42 car of Earnhardt/Ganassi Racing timed lap propelled a Chevrolet into the only non-Ford present within the at the AAA Texas 500 qualifying's top-five. David Ragan's #6 car settled into 5th place for the start bringing some assurance to Roush-Fenway Racing for the future. While 3 of the Roush-Fenway Racing Fords broke into the top-5, the 4th car of Matt Kenseth starts 19th but no where near out of contention. Kenseth won the 2002 event at Texas Motor Speedway starting 31st on that day.

While Matt Kenseth's #17 team can take solace in statistics which allows winners to come from deep in the pack, this data will also be a relieve to the top-3 Chase contenders after Friday qualifying. Points leader Jimmie Johnson starts 19th in a race track where the #48 Hendrick Motorsports team have enjoyed mixed results. After crashing during the early laps of last year's fall event on the Texas oval, Johnson rebounded in the spring by finishing 2nd place. Second place in Chase points Denny Hamlin (the driver who won the spring 2010 Texas Motor Speedway race) starts in 30th place as he looks to outperform Jimmie Johnson who is just 14 points in front after the Talladega AMP Energy 500. Within the middle, Kevin Harvick starts from 26th place on Sunday only 38 markers away from taking the points lead. 

The AAA Texas 500 is set to receive the command to start engines at 2 P.M. local time or 3 P.M. for Eastern time zone residents.

2010 NASCAR Sprint Cup
Texas Motor Speedway
AAA Texas 500
Starting Lineup

  1. 19 Elliott Sadler Stanley Ford
  2. 16 Greg Biffle American Red Cross Ford
  3. 99 Carl Edwards Aflac Ford
  4. 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Lysol Chevrolet
  5. 6 David Ragan UPS Ford
  6. 2 Kurt Busch Operation Home Front / Miller Lite Dodge
  7. 33 Clint Bowyer Cheerios / Hamburger Helper Chevrolet
  8. 78 Regan Smith Furniture Row Racing Chevrolet
  9. 5 Mark Martin CARQUEST / Chevrolet
  10. 43 A J Allmendinger Valvoline Ford
  11. 14 Tony Stewart Office Depot / Old Spice Chevrolet
  12. 98 Paul Menard Quaker State / Menards Ford
  13. 9 Aric Almirola Budweiser Ford
  14. 39 Ryan Newman Tornados Chevrolet
  15. 24 Jeff Gordon DuPont Chevrolet
  16. 31 Jeff Burton Caterpillar Chevrolet
  17. 48 Jimmie Johnson Lowe's Chevrolet
  18. 00 David Reutimann Aaron's Outdoors Toyota
  19. 17 Matt Kenseth Crown Royal Black Ford
  20. 20 Joey Logano Home Depot Toyota
  21. 56 Martin Truex Jr. NAPA Auto Parts / Susan G. Komen Toyota
  22. 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. National Guard / AMP Energy Chevrolet
  23. 82 Scott Speed Red Bull Toyota
  24. 83 Kasey Kahne Red Bull Toyota 
  25. 25 1 Jamie McMurray Bass Pro Shops / Arctic Cat Chevrolet
  26. 29 Kevin Harvick Shell / Pennzoil Chevrolet
  27. 77 Sam Hornish Jr. AAA Dodge
  28. 21 Trevor Bayne Motorcraft / Quick Lane Ford
  29. 18 Kyle Busch M&M's Toyota
  30. 11 Denny Hamlin FedEx Office Toyota
  31. 10 Bobby Labonte Gander Mountain Outdoors Chevrolet
  32. 47 Marcos Ambrose Tom Thumb Toyota
  33. 38 David Gilliland Taco Bell Ford
  34. 87 Joe Nemechek Toyota
  35. 13 Casey Mears GEICO Toyota
  36. 12 Brad Keselowski No. 12 Penske Dodge
  37. 26 Patrick Carpentier Air Guard Ford
  38. 66 Mike Bliss PRISM Motorsports Toyota
  39. 7 Robby Gordon MAPEI / Menards Toyota
  40. 71 Andy Lally Chevrolet
  41. 34 Travis Kvapil Long John Silver's Ford
  42. 37 Dave Blaney A&W All American Food Ford
  43. 09 Landon Cassill Phoenix Racing Chevrolet

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