With a blistering speed of 128.241 mph, Marcos Ambrose broke the lap record at Watkins Glen International and will lead off Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Cheez-It 355.
It was the third career pole for the Richard Petty Motorsports driver, and if history holds he should at least earn his fourth top 10 finish of season. Last year, Ambrose won back-to-back polls at Michigan and Sonoma and finished ninth and eighth, respectively.
Clint Bowyer will occupy the No. 2 slot, with Martin Truex Jr., AJ Allmendinger, and Kyle Busch filling out the top five. Bowyer is currently second in the Cup Standings, despite leading only one lap in his last 10 starts. In fact the 34-year-old Bowyer has only led 127 laps all season, and is 77 points behind first place Jimmie Johnson.
Already the points and money leader, Johnson could break his tie with Matt Kenseth and notch his fifth victory of the year starting from the No. 18 row.
Filling in for the injured Tony Stewart, Max Papis put together a 125.589 mph lap and will start from the No. 29 spot. It will be the Italian's first Cup start since 2010, when had 18 starts and posted an average finish of 37.
Stewart underwent a second surgery on the broken leg he sustained in a crash during a Sprint car race in Iowa last week. Stewart-Haas Racing released a statement on Thursday stating their top driver will be out indefinitely after breaking his right tibia and fibula.
Temperatures are expected to reach a high of 80-degrees, and it should be mostly sunny throughout the race.
The race begins at 1 p.m. ET and will be broadcast by ESPN, or watch their live online stream at Watch ESPN here.
3.Martin Truex Jr.
11.Juan Pablo Montoya
25.Dale Earnhardt Jr.
33.Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
34.Victor Gonzalez Jr.