Hemric beats Larson to pole for Daytona Xfinity race
Daniel Hemric will start from the pole for Saturday’s PowerShares QQQ 300.
Hemric scored his second career-pole in the No. 21 Richard Childress Racing Chevy with a lap of 47.541-seconds.
“It’s incredible to kick the year off like this,” Hemric said. “I’m just proud of our guys and proud of our company. The only thing I’ve ever won at Daytona was a go-kart race so it’s nice to put a notch in my belt at this level.”
Kyle Larson was second followed by Matt Tifft, Joey Logano, Spencer Gallagher, Justin Allgaier, Ryan Truex, Michael Annett, Chase Elliott, Tyler Reddick, Austin Cindric and Elliott Sadler.
Allgaier set the quick pace of 188.115mph, but was bumped Gallagher who was the eighth driver on the track. Gallagher’s dominance was short-lived as Larson bumped his with a speed of 188.980mph.
Logano moved up to second with a lap of 188.253mph but was quickly knocked off by Tifft’s run of 188.917mph. But it was Hemric who topped both session’s and did so as the last driver out in second round with a lap of 189.310mph.
The pole was the sixth for RCR at Daytona in the Xfinity Series and the fourth-consecutive overall.
Hemric also set the quick pace for Round 1 of Xfinity Series qualifying with a lap of 186.790mph. Tifft, Logano, Larson, Gallagher, Annett, Allgaier, Truex, Salder, Reddick, Cindric and Elliott all transfered to the second round.
Vinnie Miller was the ninth car on the track and jumped to the top of the speed chart with a lap of 183.614mph . However, ever posting the fastest lap, the rookie spun on the apron as he started his cool down lap.
After one-third of the field had posted times, Jeremy Clements topped Miller with a speed of 184.328mph. Ryan Sieg bumped Clements with a lap of 184.718mph. Miller remained third followed by Brandon Brown, Ryan Ellis, Caesar Bacarella, Jeff Green and Gray Gaulding.
Joe Nemechek’s lap of 185.759mph sent him to P1. Sieg, Alex Labbe, Clements and Garrett Smithley rounded out the top five after half of the field posted times.
Hemric was the 26th driver to post a time (47.672mph) and put the No. 21 Chevy to the top of the chart. Nemechek dropped to second but was quickly bumped by Elliott Sadler’s lap of 187.328mph. Joey Gase was fourth followed by Sieg. Sadler’s JR Motorsports teammate Justin Allgaier moved into P2 with his lap of 187.770mph.
Joey Logano’s lap (188.328mph) was second quick of the 32 drivers making laps. Allgaier, Ryan Truex and Sadler were the top five cars until Kyle Larson posted the third fastest time—47.839-seconds. Matt Tifft jumped to second-quick (188.648mph) of the 37 cars in his Richard Childress Racing debut.
With five drivers remaining, the top 12 were Hemric, Tifft, Logano, Larson, Annett, Truex, Sadler, Cindric and Aric Almirola. Chase Elliott cracked the top 10 as Spencer Gallagher posted the fifth quick speed (187.837mph).
Following violations by the Nos. 3 and 74 teams, NASCAR suspended both crew chiefs as well as Austin Dillon’s car chief. Neither driver was allowed to qualify for the PowerShares QQQ 300.
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