Hamlin Paces Field, Looks to Repeat 2012 Success
Last year's IRWIN Tools Night race winner Denny Hamlin continued his dominance under the lights of the Last Great Colosseum, earning the pole for Saturday's 53rd annual running of the fan-favorite event.
Pacing the field at 128.969 mph, Hamlin hopes Friday's success revives a lackluster season that has seen him sidelined by injury and plagued with equipment troubles.
"We've got something we can build on," he said of the earning the pole position. "It was kind of a nerve wracking type of lap where you know you have to drive it to a certain speed and hope that you've got the cushion there to kind of lean on and we obviously hit it just right and was able to get the pole."
"I'll be as aggressive as I possibly can to get a win - there's nothing really that I won't do," continued the Joe Gibbs Racing driver. "Really, if it comes down to a race situation here at the end like we had last year where I kind of pulled the slide job on Carl (Edwards), that's an all-out, going for broke type move and I would do the same thing obviously at this point in my season."
Kurt Busch rolls off second on Saturday with Carl Edwards, Brian Vickers and two-time Bristol winner Matt Kenseth rounding out the top five. Other notable include March's winner Kasey Kahne (7th), Brad Keselowski (12th), Jimmie Johnson (13th), Dale Earnhardt, Jr. (19th) and highest-qualifying rookie Danica Patrick (22nd).
Tickets still are available for Saturday night's IRWIN Tools Night Race. For more information, call (423) BRISTOL or 855-888-8545.