ThatsRacin

Joey Logano stays hot, wins pole at Martinsville

NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Joey Logano straps himself in for the first practice session for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup auto race at Martinsville Speedway in Martinsville, Va., Friday.
NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Joey Logano straps himself in for the first practice session for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup auto race at Martinsville Speedway in Martinsville, Va., Friday. AP

Red-hot Joey Logano won the pole Friday for Sunday’s Goody’s 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Martinsville Speedway.

Logano’s lap of 98.548 mph was fastest in the final round of qualifying. He’ll start on the front row with Martin Truex (98.487).

Logano has won the last three Cup races – at Charlotte, Kansas and Talladega in his No. 22 Ford. This was his series-high sixth pole of the season and 14th of his career.

“I don’t believe in luck, I believe in hard work, which is what this team is doing right now,” Logano said. “It’s been a blast to drive this car. It’s been so fast.”

Logano was also on the pole for Martinsville’s race in March and finished third. Logano doesn’t have a victory at Martinsville in 13 career starts.

Notes

▪ Ross Kenseth, son of Cup driver Matt Kenseth, will get his first Truck Series start in Saturday’s Kroger 200. Ross Kenseth made his first Xfinity Series start earlier this season at Chicagoland Speedway, where he finished sixth after starting second.

▪ Austin Cindric will drive Brad Keselowski’s No. 29 Ford in the Truck race. Cincric, 17, replaces Austin Theriault, who was injured in a crash recently in a race at Las Vegas. Brian Keselowski, Brad Keselowski’s older brother, drove the truck last week at Talladega and finished 17th.

▪ Charlotte’s William Byron will drive for Kyle Busch Motorsports in next season’s Truck series. Byron, a senior at Charlotte Country Day, will make his first truck start in two weeks at Phoenix International Raceway. Byron, 17, won this season’s NASCAR’s K&N Pro Series East championship. He will be joined as a full-time driver for KBM next season by Christopher Bell. Daniel Suarez and Cody Coughlin will split time in the team’s third car.

▪ Brandon Jones was penalized 25 points for a pre-race qualifying inspection violation last week at Talladega. Shane Huffman, Jones’ crew chief, was fined $25,000, suspended three races and placed on probation for six months. Jones finished second behind Timothy Peters in the race.

▪ TaxAct has extended its sponsorship with Danica Patrick and will be the primary sponsor for four races each year, beginning in 2016.

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