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Kyle Larson beats Bubba Wallace to Martinsville Cup pole by 0.001s

Larson, the last of 10 cars in the final round of Saturday’s qualifying, just nipped Bubba Wallace on his second lap to grab the pole for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup race.

It was 40 years ago at the spring Martinsville race that Geoffrey Bodine won the first Cup race for team owner Rick Hendrick, which kept his fledgling organization in business and evoled into one of NASCAR’s most successful teams.

Larson, who drives the No. 5 Chevrolet for HMS, had an average lap speed of 96.034 mph, just edging Wallace (96.029 mph) – a difference of one thousandth of a second.

The pole is the second for Larson this season, 18th of his career and second at Martinsville.

“That was a bit unexpected,” Larson said. “I knew we would be good but wasn’t sure we’d be that good. It’s really cool to his (car) on the pole for Hendrick’s 40th anniversary.

“It looks like all four Hendrick cars are good, too. It’s a great day for the organization. We just got to execute in the race.”

Larson’s Hendrick teammate, Chase Elliott, will line up third, Martin Truex Jr. fourth and Chase Briscoe rounded out the top five.

Completing the top-10 starting lineup are Joey Logano, Josh Berry, Denny Hamlin, Ryan Blaney and HMS driver Alex Bowman.

Round 1 / Group B

Larson, the last car to go out in Group B, shot to the top of the speed chart with an average lap speed of 96.293 mph.

Elliott ended up second fastest (96.293 mph) while Hamlin was third (96.249 mph).

Also advancing to the final round of qualifying from Group B were Berry and Logano.

Among those who failed to move on were Kyle Busch, Brad Keselowski, Ty Gibbs and Daniel Suarez.

Round 1 / Group A

Wallace was one of the few drivers to pick up significantly on their second lap and led the way in the first group with an average lap speed of 95.646 mph.

Briscoe was second fastest (95.646 mph) while Bowman ended up third (95.228 mph).

Also advancing to the final round of qualifying from Group A were Truex and Blaney.

Among those who failed to move on were Austin Cindric, Ross Chastain and William Byron.

This article was originally published by a www.motorsport.com . Read the Original article here. .

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