Martin Truex, Jr. put his NAPA Auto Parts Toyota on the front row for Sunday’s AdvoCare 500 from the Phoenix International Raceway. He led the Michael Waltrip Racing banner with that run, behind him will be teammate Mark Martin starting in the 10th position. Clint Bowyer will start Sunday from the 16th position. Below is post-qualifying reaction from all of MWR’s drivers.
MARTIN TRUEX JR. – No. 56 NAPA AUTO PARTS Toyota – 2nd How was your lap today? “It was good lap. Definitely a good lap for our NAPA Toyota. We had a really good practice today. We had good speed all day long. Obviously, the late draw was something that we knew was going to be big. We were fortunate enough to be able to get that and go out late, put down a good lap. It wasn’t good enough, obviously, but nonetheless a good starting spot for Sunday and hopefully we’ll be able to turn that into something big.”
How has this surface changed? “At the start of practice it was pretty treacherous just because it’s been sitting, so it’s just tough to know. We go through so much with transition in the race car throughout practice because the track is new and the tires are kind of hard, especially today with it being dirty when we started — the car changed a lot. But, the car’s had a lot of speed in it all day and it’s been a lot of fun. I love Phoenix, so I love coming out here. This is a great race track and just hope the groove gets a little bit wider before the race starts.”
How important will track position be on Sunday? “Well, starting up front here is important. That’s a big deal here. Hopefully, we’ll be able to hold onto it. Knock on wood. It’s always hard to stand around and wait and hope that it hangs on.”
MARK MARTIN – No. 55 Aaron’s Dream Machine Toyota – 10th How was your qualifying run? “Well, it wasn’t our best. The guys did a good job adjusting the car for practice. We had a tough evening to practice. We just didn’t get the car where we wanted it, so I thought they did a good job of getting close. Qualifying is always so close that you can’t afford to not be on your game and we just weren’t able to get everything out of it based on not being quite where we needed to be.”
CLINT BOWYER, No. 15 5-hour ENERGY Toyota Camry – 16th “We had a good practice today in the 5-hour ENERGY Toyota. I thought that we were going to be pretty good for qualifying, but we were just a little too loose when it counts. We’ll be fine. We have plenty of time to work on it and the crew chief, engineers and crew will get it ready to roll for Sunday.”
-Kyle Busch won the pole.
-Truex Jr. and Denny Hamlin were second and third.
-Race begins at 2 p.m. Sunday on ESPN, MRN and SiriusXM Radio Channel 90.