With most NASCAR eyes focused squarely on Charlotte Motor Speedway this weekend for Saturday’s Sprint All-Star Race, the NASCAR Nationwide Series headed to Iowa Speedway in Newton for a rare Sunday event — the Pioneer Hi-Bred 250.
Pole qualifying for the Nationwide race was held on Saturday, with Elliott Sadler taking the pole with a 23.523-second qualifying lap from behind the wheel of the No. 2 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet. It’s his second Iowa pole in only three attempts.
“Last season was the first time I had the opportunity to race there, and we walked away with two good finishes,” Sadler said. “After last week’s unfortunate finish at Darlington Raceway, I think the entire team is hungry for a win at Iowa.”
The No. 12 Penske Racing Dodge of Sam Hornish Jr. will join Sadler on the front row for Sunday’s race, since Hornish posted the second-fastest qualifying time of 23.632 seconds.
Series points leader Ricky Stenhouse Jr., who won both Nationwide events at Iowa last year, will start Sunday’s race from the third spot.
“It would be awesome to win three races in a row at a single track,” Stenhouse said.
Michael McDowell will start fourth in the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota. His teammate for the race will be Darrell Wallace Jr., making his series debut in the No. 20 JGR entry. Wallace wil start eighth on Sunday.
Rounding out the top-five in qualifying was Justin Allgaier.
The Pioneer Hi-Bred 250 is scheduled to take the green flag soon after 2 p.m. ET Sunday. It can be seen live on ESPN2.
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