AVONDALE, Ariz. — Kevin Harvick claimed his 25th career Pole award for Sunday’s Can-Am 500 at ISM Raceway. The award comes just two days after NASCAR docked the Stewart-Haas Racing driver 40 points and suspended his crew chief, Rodney Childers, for the next two Cup series events at ISM Raceway and Homestead-Miami Speedway.
“It’s been a good day for us,” Harvick said. “All we concentrated on was qualifying and obviously we had some good adjustments to the car right there at the end and I was actually able to drive the car without screwing it up. It was definitely a good lap for us and came at a good time.”
Chase Elliott will start second on Sunday at ISM Raceway, which is his fifth in six races at ISM Raceway.
“Just had a great car really all day,” Elliott said. “We were lucky not to have to make a ton of adjustments and was in a good place. Just didn’t get through my lap as good as I had hoped. I had a plenty good enough car to do so, unfortunately, but plenty good enough starting spot for Sunday. It’s a long race and I’m looking forward to the challenge.”
Ricky Stenhouse Jr. will start third, his best starting position of 2018. Ryan Blaney will start fourth, followed by Alex Bowman in fifth.
Playoff contenders Kyle Busch and Joey Logano will start sixth and ninth respectively, and Martin Truex Jr. will start 13th. Kurt Busch (14th), Clint Bowyer (16th), and Aric Almirola (18th) were slowest among the Playoff contenders.
“We were just off,” said Almirola. “The car had speed in practice, but the balance was just not quite right. I was definitely looking for a little more and then right there we were just still off in the balance.
“The times are so close and so tight that you’ve got to be so precise and my car just struggling to get the grip I need out of it to go make lap time there, so we’ll get ready for tomorrow. This is an interesting race. A lot can happen and we can still win coming from 18th.”
Matt Courson is the Managing Editor for The Racing Experts. Courson has covered NASCAR events at 19 of the 23 active racetracks. When not at the track, the 20-year-old Journalism major enjoys spending time with family and playing Ingress.