Reutimann on a roll, earns pole for Dover Cup race

Sprint Cup SeriesBy Sporting News Wire Service for Nascar.com.

Four days after winning his first Sprint Cup race, David Reutimann won his second pole of the season and the third of his career, qualifying his No. 00 Toyota in the top spot for Sunday’s Autism Speaks 400 at Dover International Speedway.

The 11th driver to make a qualifying run, Reutimann turned his lap at the Monster Mile in 22.960 seconds (156.794 mph) to edge Kasey Kahne (156.542 mph) for the No. 1 starting position. Kahne was first on the track for time trials, but only Reutimann could top the No. 9 Dodge, which is powered for the first time this season by the Dodge R6 engine.

Juan Montoya (156.020 mph) qualified third, followed by Reed Sorenson (155.952 mph), Kahne’s teammate at Richard Petty Motorsports. Greg Biffle (155.932 mph), the most recent winner at Dover, claimed the fifth starting position. Kyle Busch, A.J. Allmendinger, Jimmie Johnson, Brian Vickers and Elliott Sadler will take the green flag from positions six through 10, respectively.

All four RPM drivers — Kahne, Sorenson, Allmendinger and Sadler — earned grid positions in the top 10.

Reutimann was concerned about his relatively early qualifying draw, but the concrete surface at Dover didn’t change much throughout the afternoon.

“I worried a little bit about the earlier draw,” Reutimann said. “It seems to be a mind-set at most of the tracks we go to that when you go out and it’s hotter, the track is obviously slower. It’s a good thing that concrete surfaces like we have here at Dover don’t seem to react as drastically to temperature changes as a lot of places we go to.

“When we went out, the temperature was about 3 degrees hotter than what it was when we practiced [Reutimann also paced the morning practice session], so it wasn’t a great deal different. At the end of the day, I don’t think going out early was a factor.”

Kahne was pleased with the performance of the new engine, which the Penske Racing Dodges already have been using.
“So far … I can really tell the difference,” he said. “I can really get off the corner and onto the straightaway because of the torque it has compared to the R5 [the engine he has been using]. The new engine is something that we’ve needed, and I think that it’s going to be really good with cars around me as well.”

Kahne’s RPM teammates are still running the old engine.

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~ por Mikel en 30 mayo 2009.

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