Daytona, FL- In his final race at the Daytona International Speedway, Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet won the pole for the 59th annual Coke-Zero 400. It is his first pole at Daytona International Speedway since 2013, which was his only other pole at Daytona.
Qualifying 2nd was his Hendrick Motor sports teammate Chase Elliot in the #24 NAPA Patriotic Chevrolet. Elliot was asked about the preparation of his teammate and weather he feels like Jr. was more focused this week. His reply, “I do think he has been very determined to make sure his car is driving exactly how he want’s it.”
Qualifying 3rd was Brad Keselowski in the #2 Detroit Genuine Parts Ford. 4th was Kasey Kahne in the #5 UniFirst Chevrolet, with Kevin Harvick in the #4 Jimmy Johns Ford rounding out the top 5.
This is Jr.’s 18th career Monster Energy Cup Series Pole. The last time he won the pole at Daytona in 2013, Jr. captured the Daytona 500 victory. The Pole win automatically qualifies Jr. for the 2018 Advanced Auto Parts Clash at Daytona. When asked if he would participate in that race next year Jr. said only, “I’ll talk to my boss and see what he’s got in the shed.”
You can watch Jr. go for his 18th career win at Daytona in the 59th annual Coke-Zero 400 Saturday, July 1st, 2017 at 7:30 pm EST. on NBC.