Tyler Reddick roars to new track record and Trucks pole at Talladega

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NASCAR Camping World Truck Series rookie Tyler Reddick on Friday afternoon roared to the pole for Saturday’s Fred’s 250 as the Talladega Superspeedway track record for Trucks wasn’t just broken, it was obliterated.

The old mark was 182.320 mph by a surprising name: now-retired Sprint Cup and Nationwide Series driver Mark Martin (Oct. 7, 2006).

Reddick bettered that mark by nearly 4 1/2 mph, clocking in at 186.827 mph, barely holding on to take the pole from Tayler Malsam (186.714 mph).

“I probably had the fastest truck of our group,” Reddick told Fox Sports 1. “I had no idea it was going to be a first-place qualifying position. I thought it was going to be more like sixth or seventh.

“There’s a lot of uncertainty with this qualifying program. The old style, you knew you had two laps to go out and you were done.

“But I’m glad we had the change. It got us a pole.”

Points leader Matt Crafton was third-fastest (186.427) and predicted a wild race on Saturday afternoon.

“It’s going to be chaos the whole race,” Crafton said. “We’ve got a good starting spot. All in all, it’s a good starting position.”

Johnny Sauter qualified fourth (186.278), followed by Ryan Blaney (185.517) and Erik Jones (185.301).

The rest of the top 12 qualifiers were Jeb Burton (185.273), Joe Nemechek (185.154), John Wes Townley (182.685), Mason Mingus (182.671), Chris Fontaine (182.598) and German Quiroga (175.810).

One of the biggest surprises was the qualifying effort of Darrell “Bubba” Wallace Jr., who will start 27th, his worst-ever start in the Truck series.

All 36 drivers that qualified made the show.

The rest of the field is:

13 Ben Kennedy 185.718

14 Ron Hornaday Jr. 185.679

15 Brennan Newberry 185.581

16 Joey Coulter 185.380

17 Daniel Suarez 185.308

18 Jimmy Weller 185.147

19 Bryan Silas 184.965

20 Clay Greenfield 184.947

21 Spencer Gallagher 184.708

22 Ryan Sieg 184.509

23 Norm Benning 183.973

24 Jennifer Jo Cobb 183.600

25 Tyler Young 181.870

26 Timothy Peters 181.697

27 Darrell Wallace Jr. 181.374

28 Ryan Ellis 179.726

29 Korbin Forrister 179.561

30 Scott Stenzel 177.806

31 Cody Ware 176.663

32 Derek White 175.590

33 Michael Affarano 175.581

34 Justin Jennings 165.999

35 Mike Harmon No Speed

36 Milka Duno No Speed

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Ganassi announces multiyear sponsorship extension with American Legion for No. 10

Chip Ganassi American Legion
David Allio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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Chip Ganassi Racing announced a new primary sponsorship deal with The American Legion this week, shoring up the funding on its No. 10 Dallara-Honda of Alex Palou.

The 2021 NTT IndyCar Series champion primarily had driven with NTT Data sponsorship the past two seasons. But NTT Data will move next season to McLaren Racing as a primary sponsor for Felix Rosenqvist in 10 races and on the Indy 500 car of Tony Kanaan (who drove an American Legion car for Ganassi at the Brickyard last year).

It was the latest twist in a McLaren-Ganassi saga that included a contract dispute for the services of Palou (who is expected to move to McLaren in 2024 after reaching an agreement to race with Ganassi next year).

Ganassi stayed within its own walls to help plug the sponsorship gap left by NTT Data, re-signing The American Legion to a multiyear extension. The Indianapolis-based non-profit organization, which has been sponsoring Ganassi cars for the past few seasons, also will be associated with other Ganassi drivers, including Indy 500 winner Marcus Ericsson and development driver Kyffin Simpson in Indy NXT.

The Ganassi organization will continue promoting The American Legion’s “Be The One” campaign aimed at reducing veteran suicides. The team launched an online auction for the initiative this week.

“Supporting our nation’s veterans is of immense importance to our organization and we are humbled to continue supporting The American Legion’s mission in ending veteran suicide,” team owner Chip Ganassi said in a release. “We will do absolutely everything we can to help veterans get the support they need while raising public awareness of the ‘Be The One’ platform.”

“We have received an overwhelming amount of support from fans, active-duty military members and veterans as a result of this partnership and we’re pleased to see it grow,” said Dean Kessel, chief marketing officer at The American Legion. “Thanks to the continuous collaboration with the team’s other partners, and the promotion of the ‘Be The One’ initiative, we are discovering more ways to engage with the military community than ever before. We want all veterans to know that it’s okay to ask for help.”