Brendan Gaughan will start the UAW-GM Quality 500 from the 16th position Saturday night under the lights at Lowe’s Motor Speedway at Charlotte.
With qualifying scheduled to begin at 7:10 p.m., EDT, the track temperatures were beginning to cool off. Gaughan was the 41st driver out of 52 to make his qualifying attempt, which the team felt gave it an advantage. The Concord, N.C., facility is one of the most heat sensitive tracks on the circuit and Gaughan looked forward to the increased grip under the cooling temperatures.
When Gaughan made his run, the low 70-degree temperatures had cooled approximately 10 degrees.
Gaughan hoped for a better starting position, even though he knows the starting position does not necessarily dictate the finish in the event.
“I felt like we could have been faster, actually, I thought we were faster but it is what it is,” Gaughan said. “We picked up six-tenths from practice to qualifying and that is a positive. Qualifying is just that, a place to start. The guys worked hard all day to find the right set-up, but it is difficult to practice under the sun and qualify under the lights at Charlotte. We are ready to practice in race-trim to see
what we really have to work with.”
Gaughan’s Penske-Jasper-powered teammates Ryan Newman and Rusty Wallace will start from the pole position and 14th, respectively.