Thursday, October 21, 2021

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NCWTS: Joey Logano Scores Kroger 250 Pole at Martinsville Speedway

At the end of Camping World Truck Series qualifying for the Kroger 250 at Martinsville Speedway, it’d be Joey Logano topping the charts with a lap of 19.504 seconds. The lap of Logano sets a brand new track record and marks his first career pole in the Camping World Truck Series.

After setting the quick time, though, Logano would go for a spin after catching the curb slightly off of turn two. There were concerns that he would need to change tires due to flat-spotting, resulting in having to start the race from the rear, but he commented afterwards that the tires were fine.

“We’re all set there (on tires),” Logano said. “Just should’ve come in – didn’t need that one anyway. Just trying to get a little more there, felt I had a tad bit in the tank to go faster, but looped her. Cool that we’ll start up front here in both races.”

Cole Custer would qualify second, marking the fourth career front row start for the 17-year-old.

“Just got a little bit too tight in the center – don’t know why,” he commented. “I felt like yesterday our race run stuff was better than our qualifying stuff, so I think we’ll race good all race long. I don’t think one spot is going to make a bunch of difference.”

Custer’s effort this weekend marks the first truck race for JR Motorsports, but there is experience around Custer in the form of spotter Eddie D’Hondt and crew chief Joe Shear, who was in charge of Custer’s effort last year with Turner-Scott Motorsports.

“Eddie was a help at the top in telling me to go lower off of the corner and such,” Custer shared. “Can’t thank Dale Jr., Kelley Earnhardt, L.W. Miller enough for this opportunity and putting it together – and really Joe Shear and all the guys. They’ve given me a good truck.”

Rookie Cameron Hayley was third quickest, followed by Erik Jones and John Wes Townley. Brandon Jones was sixth quickest, followed by Tyler Reddick, David Gilliland, Johnny Sauter, Tyler Young, Daniel Saurez and Gray Gaulding. Saurez says the biggest thing that he has been learning in his first trip to Martinsville is how to drive the entry of the corner.

“That is difficult because all you want is to go faster and the easiest thought is to get faster on the entry,” he added. “It’s about learning how to get smooth on the entry, and be faster on the second half of the corner versus the first half.”

Defending race winner and series champion Matt Crafton would qualify 13th, commenting that his team mainly focused on race runs during practice on Friday. Daniel Hemric qualified 14th, followed by James Buescher, John Hunter Nemechek, Timothy Peters, Spencer Gallagher and Matt Tifft.

“We found some things last night, and felt that we had a good truck for qualifying,” Peters commented. “I don’t know what happened to the 51 (Saurez) there. He just slowed up. 17 starting 17th is good – it should make it interesting. Hopefully we don’t finish 17th. Take away the seven and we should finish first.”

Unfortunately, qualifying wouldn’t go as Travis Kvapil or Charles Buchanan Jr. wanted as Kvapil would go for a spin, while Buchanan got loose off of the corner, making contact with the wall. Wendell Chavous, Brandon Brown, Paige Decker, and Buchanan Jr. would fail to qualify for the race.



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