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Gordon takes pole at Charlotte Motor Speedway
Gordon, who is fourth in the Chase standings, said it’s been a frustrating season but that he’s feeling better with each passing race.
“I feel like we knocked it out of the park tonight,” Gordon said.
Gordon was upbeat after the qualifying, saying things are finally starting to mesh for the No. 24 Chevrolet team.
“The thing is it’s really hard to maintain your confidence in what you’re doing when you’re struggling,” Gordon said. “I felt like all year long we have been racing better than we have been qualifying, but that qualifying was a weakness for us and we needed to get better track position. It’s hard not to get down when things aren’t going well. … It’s hard to come in here all bubbly and having fun, because honestly it wasn’t fun.”
“This will be one of our worst qualifying efforts of the year so we have a lot of work to do,” Kenseth said.
For a while it looked like his early lap would hold up.
But then a series of drivers eclipsed his time, capped finally by Gordon, who had the last car on the track.
“There were a lot of good cars at the end of the session and that kept leading up to things getting faster and faster,” Harvick said.
Gordon called it “the most exciting qualifying pole ever.”
Harvick said he would have been happy starting on the outside row had he not won from the pole last week at Kansas.
“Obviously we wanted to be greedy and get that again tonight,” Harvick said. “But it’s been nice to see the speed. It seems like everybody is able to find a little more and dig deeper when it is Chase time.”
Kyle Larson, making his Sprint Cup debut in Phoenix Racing’s No. 51 Chevrolet, qualified 21st.
“We’ve had some really strong runs here over the years,” Johnson said.
Travis Kvapil qualified 41st one day after being released from police custody on $2,000 bond. He was arrested Tuesday and charged with misdemeanor assault on a female and false imprisonment.
“I’m obviously embarrassed about the situation,” Kvapil said. “I don’t like the negative effects that it has brought on. So I apologize to NASCAR, my team, supporters of my team, my fans and anyone else that was impacted by Tuesday night.”
By Donald Lambro
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