TOP-10 TEAM CHEVY UNOFFICIAL QUALIFYING RESULTS:
2nd KYLE LARSON, NO. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM CAMARO ZL1
5th CHASE ELLIOTT, NO. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS CAMARO ZL1
7th TYLER REDDICK, NO. 8 BETMGM CAMARO ZL1
9th RICKY STENHOUSE JR., NO. 47 SUNNYD CAMARO ZL1
10th AUSTIN DILLON, NO. 3 BREZTRI CAMARO ZL1
TOP-FIVE UNOFFICIAL QUALIFYING RESULTS:
1st Christopher Bell (Toyota)
2nd Kyle Larson (Chevrolet)
3rd Austin Cindric (Ford)
4th Chase Briscoe (Ford)
5th Chase Elliott (Chevrolet)
· Kyle Larson made a lap of 29.668 seconds, at 182.014 mph, in his No. 5 HendrickCars.com Camaro ZL1 to capture a front row starting spot in the NASCAR Cup Series Pennzoil 400 Presented by Jiffy Lube at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
· It’s the 29-year-old Hendrick Motorsports Driver’s eighth top-10 starting spot in 12 races at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
· It also marks his 39th front row starting spot in his NASCAR Cup Series career.
· FOX will telecast the NASCAR Cup Series Wise Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway live at 3:30 p.m. ET tomorrow, Sunday, March 6. Live coverage can also be found on PRN and Sirius XM NASCAR Radio Channel 90.
KYLE LARSON, NO. 5 HENDRICKCARS.COM CAMARO ZL1, POST-QUALIFYING PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT:
FOR THE PAST THREE WEEKS, YOU’VE BEEN THE FAVORITE TO WIN THE RACE. DOES THAT EVER WEIGH ON YOU?
“I like being the favorite. That means you’ve done a good job. But I don’t pay too much attention to it. I don’t really think that matters a whole lot because odds makers don’t really know as much as all the teams and drivers do, as far as what cars are stuff are good at each track. But either way, it’s good. It’s good to qualify on the front row here at Las Vegas (Motor Speedway) and hopefully we can have another solid run; execute a great race and try and fight for another win.”
SOME TRACKS THAT YOU GUYS RACE AT, PEOPLE HAVE GREAT STARTING POSITIONS AND THEY ACT LIKE IT’S NOT REALLY SUCH A BIG DEAL BECAUSE OF HOW THE RACE PLAYS OUT. IS THAT A BIGGER DEAL HERE AT LAS VEGAS, TO HAVE THE ABILITY TO START UP FRONT?
“I think it’s important at every race track; probably more important than I used to think. Last year, we got to run up front a lot. We had great pit stops and executed races very well to maintain that track position; where I maybe didn’t have that in the past. Having well-executed races and maintaining that, you get a sense for how much easier the races go by. You’re doing a lot less fighting and putting yourself in hairy situations and stuff like that. Starting up front is just the beginning to that. Like last week, we had to go from the rear and it was a fight to get to about the middle portions of the second stage to where we could then try and maintain that. We had one hiccup on pit road and lost some spots again. But yeah, starting the race up front is, in my opinion, definitely really important.”
WHEN YOU CAME IN EARLIER, YOU SAID YOU WERE GOING TO CATCHUP WITH CHASE (ELLIOTT) LATER. HAS THAT HAPPENED YET?
“Yeah, I got to talk to him and we got to go over what happened from each of our vantage points. It was good to have a conversation and good to hopefully move along from it. It went well; honestly better than I anticipated. He’s a great teammate and I’m going to do my part to be a great teammate each and every week. Hopefully we never have any incidents happen again like what happened last week.”
DID YOU FIND THAT HE WAS UNDERSTANDING?
“Yeah, I felt like he was. I was encouraged by that. Like I said, he’s always been a great teammate. We’re both young and we’re both going to be fighting for wins together. So, hopefully nothing like that happens again.”
BEFORE THE DAYTONA 500, YOU PREDICTED A BIG YEAR FOR TYLER REDDICK AND HE’S LOOKED PRETTY GOOD SO FAR. WHY DID YOU THINK THAT?
“I think it was just a combination of a lot of things. I’ve grown up with Tyler (Reddick). I’ve known Tyler since he was like five. I’ve always seen his talent and I feel like – yes, the testing was a big part of it. But the way the rules packages have gone with a little more horsepower and less downforce, I feel like that’s going to suite him very well. And it’s proven to be that way, so far. I think it’s just a combination of a lot of things. But yeah, he was by far the fast car last week. He was around me a lot in practice today and I felt like he was really good again. I would look to him to be strong again tomorrow. Speaking of odds makers and stuff, I’m sure there are probably going to be a lot of people putting some money on him.”
REPEAT WINNERS DON’T HAPPEN OFTEN HERE. WHAT DO YOU THINK IT’S GOING TO TAKE TO REPEAT YOUR WIN HERE FROM LAST YEAR?
“Well, I don’t know. I feel like I’m not really technically repeating anything because I lost the second time we came to Las Vegas (Motor Speedway) last year. I don’t know – it’s just like any other race. I think the repeat thing doesn’t matter. You have to have a fast car, execute a good race; both you and your team. It’s hard to go back-to-back each week, back-to-back each time. I think our team is strong enough to hopefully do it.”
DID THE WIND PLAY A FACTOR?
“I don’t know. I felt like in (turns) three and four, with the wind blowing that direction, the first run I made it was a little inconsistent for me to get to the bottom. But once I just kind of calmed down my entry and slowed down a little bit more, I was able to hit my marks better. It’s just something you have to adjust to as a driver.
“I was behind Kyle (Busch) when he crashed and that was crazy. It turned around backwards so fast. I don’t know if the wind had anything to do with that, something broke, he hit a seam or what. It was wild.”
IT WAS A TIRE THAT WENT DOWN. HIS LEFT REAR.
“OK, that makes sense because it turned around backwards so fast and it had me nervous for a little while.”