INDIANAPOLIS – A.J. Allmendinger’s recent success at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway continued Friday as he won the pole for Saturday’s Pennzoil 150 NASCAR Xfinity Series race.
Allmendinger won last year’s Verizon 200 NASCAR Cup Series race in dramatic last-lap chaos between Denny Hamlin and Chase Briscoe.
On Friday evening, it was a little more subdued for the former Champ Car World Series and IndyCar driver.
He advanced out of second group out of the first qualifying round and won the pole in the final round of 10 drivers.
Allmendinger ran a fast lap of 97.834 miles per hour around the 14-turn. 2.439-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course in the No. 16 Chevrolet.
It was his sixth pole in 80 NASCAR Xfinity Series races., his third pole and 14th top-10 start in 2022.
It is also his second pole in three races on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.
“It was a good day,” Allmendinger said. “We’ve been working hard to try to find more speed outright. We unloaded, was happy in practice. This place is tough to execute a lot of different corners.
“I thought the first lap was pretty good. The second run, guys like Ty Gibbs were doing a good job.
“I slipped up going into Turn 4 trying to free the car up and get a good lap. I was glad to see us get the pole and see the green flag when it falls on Saturday.”
Ty Gibbs was second in a Toyota at 97.732 mph followed by Riley Herbst’s Ford at 97.478 mph. Alex Bowman’s Chevrolet was fourth at 97.333 mph followed by Sam Mayer’s Chevrolet at 97.121 mph.
“Going from one series to another, you get more laps on the track, but on the road courses it’s harder because you change your brake markers by a ton,” Allmendinger said. “It’s been a challenge. I enjoy it. On the ovals, you learn certain nuances that help, but road course races are a bit of a challenge.
“At the end of the day, laps are laps and that is what counts.”