The lineup for the Pocono 500 has been set, and even with a lot of rain, the race is still expected to go off. The rain served to hurt the qualifying days for the race though, and instead of time trials to decide who will be placed in the lineup, it will instead default to the Owner Points given out so far this NASCAR season. This will be the 14th race of this young NASCAR season, and will see some good racing as the Pocono 500 gets ready to start their engines. Coverage will begin at 9:30 A.M. Pacific time on June 8th; all to be seen on TNT live. Hopefully the Friday rain won’t deter drivers from competing well in the race.
Friday, June 6th turned out to be a complete wash for the NASCAR drivers hoping to participate in the Pocono 500, as both practice and qualifying laps were set back due to the steady rain falling on the track. That could seriously change the feel of the race on Sunday, and while hurting some drivers, could also serve to help several others. The message from drivers is also mixed, with some enjoying the brief time of the track, while others are frustrated that they didn’t have the chance to garner a higher slot in the Sunday race. Now everything will be decided by Owner Points as the field is set for Sunday, and that will give a unique look to the field as the drivers get ready to race.
The Pocono track is a 2.5 mile tri-oval track, and quite a long one in the sport. It’s a bit of a challenge, so practice will be needed on Saturday to get a better feel for what the track has to offer, but officials have already set the field for Sunday’s race in order to stay ahead of the rains. The decision to go with the Owner Points means that Tony Stewart in his Chevrolet will sit on the pole for the race, with fellow Chevrolet driver Jeff Gordon next to him on the front row. Row two will consist of Jimmie Johnson and Kurt Busch, with row three consisting of Ryan Newman and Kyle Busch. The first ten cars are rounded out by Denny Hamlin and Matt Kenseth in row four, and Greg Biffle and Jeff Burton in row five.
The 2009 Pocono 500 lineup could present an interesting look at racing this year, and having the leaders already at the front could potentially remove some of the excitement on race day. Nobody ever knows exactly what is going to happen though, and that is why they race the races. The Pocono 500 gets started at 12:30 P.M. on TNT June 8th.
Sources: Pocono 500 Lineup and Rain Cancels Time-Trials