Wednesday, April 25, 2018
Sports

Larson loses pole to Truex after inspection

LOUDON, N.H. — Kyle Larson has made a habit of flunking NASCAR inspection.

Knocked from the top of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup points standings this week because of an inspection failure, Larson was stripped of his pole Friday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and had his winning time tossed out for yet another infraction. He will start at the rear of the field in Sunday's Overton's 301 race.

Martin Truex will lead the field to green for the first time this season.

"Not the way we wanted to get our first pole of the year but looking forward to starting up front," Truex said.

Larson's time was disallowed because of an unapproved rear deck fin lid. NASCAR said there would be no additional penalties.

He had raced to the top of the field without his suspended crew chief, turning a lap of 133.324 mph to win his fourth pole of the season.

Larson's team was penalized 35 points this week by NASCAR, erasing what had been a one-point advantage over Truex in the standings. Crew chief Chad Johnston was suspended for three races because of a rear brake cooling assembly that did not meet standards.

"I know nothing about race cars," Larson said. "I don't honestly know what it was that got us in trouble. Yeah, a big penalty so it must have been something important in their eyes."

Truex has the pole and Jimmie Johnson, Matt Kenseth, Jamie McMurray and Kasey Kahne completed the top five.

FORMULA ONE: After setting the pace in practice for the British Grand Prix, Valtteri Bottas was hit by a five-place penalty on the grid at Silverstone, England. The sanction was imposed due to an unscheduled change of a gearbox because it had not been used for six consecutive races. Bottas had outpaced Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton by less than a tenth of a second. Qualifying is today for Sunday's race.

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