Open Race Thread: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Samsung Mobile 500 - Texas Motor Speedway

CONCORD, NC - MAY 29: Matt Kenseth (L), driver of the #17 Jeremiah Weed Southern Style Ford, talks with car owner Jack Roush (R) on the grid prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on May 29, 2011 in Concord, North Carolina. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)

The Easter break allowed for a moment of reflection on the first six weeks of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season. During that break we learned that Stewart-Haas will not be suffering a hangover from the 2011 championship season with defending champion Tony Stewart winning two races (fifth in standings) and Ryan Newman winning last time out at Martinsville.

It's still early but they've thrown the early gauntlet on the Sprint Cup garage during the season's first leg.

Most would have expected Hendrick Motorsports to contend against Stewart-Haas - after all, Hendrick supplies engines and support to Stewart, Newman and Danica Patrick. Alas, Hendrick has been shut out. Jeff Gordon sits 21st in points and Kasey Kahne is 31st.

That's opened the door for new-look Michael Waltrip Racing (Toyota) to sneak in take some of the early-season headlines away from Hendrick and Chevrolet. That's included a Phoenix pole by Mark Martin, who would have been a championship contender if not for scaling back from a full season to 25 races in 2012.

Clint Bowyer has shown renewed vigor with MWR and new crew chief Brian Pattie, brought over from Ganassi Racing. But it's actually the longest-tenured MWR driver who made early headlines this weekend, when Martin Truex Jr. won the pole for Saturday's Samsung Mobile 500 at Texas Motor Speedway.

Truex captured the pole with a 28.366 at 190.369 mph. This put him just ahead of the most-decorated driver in Texas history - Matt Kenseth, who qualified on the outside pole with a 28.399 and 190.148 mph.

Just how good has Kenseth been at Texas?

Kenseth has two wins at the Fort Worth speedway, and averages an 8.74 finish. More importantly, they've said that they expect to win this weekend. If not Kenseth, expect to see a Roushketeer fighting for the lead in the closing laps.

That includes points leader Greg Biffle, who's starting third and Carl Edwards, who will start in 20th. It's a just a Roush kind of day. But will it be a Roush kind of night?

Live television coverage will start on FOX at 7 p.m. EST and will feature the voices of Mike Joy, Larry McReynolds and Darrell Waltrip. For those who are away from a television set or prefer the radio broadcast, www.goprn.com/ will stream the race live on any supported computer or mobile device.

A complete starting lineup can be found after the jump!

Starting Line Up by Row
Texas Motor Speedway
16th Annual Samsung Mobile 500
Provided by NASCAR Statistics - Fri, April 13, 2012 @ 08:03 PM Eastern
Track Race Record: Tony Stewart 11/06/11 03:16:51 152.705
Row Pos Car Driver Team Time Speed
1 1 56 Martin Truex, Jr. NAPA Auto Parts Toyota 28.366 190.369
2 17 Matt Kenseth Best Buy Ford 28.399 190.148
2 3 16 Greg Biffle Filtrete Ford 28.403 190.121
4 55 Mark Martin Aaron's Best of the Best Toyota 28.418 190.020
3 5 5 Kasey Kahne Farmers Insurance Chevrolet 28.476 189.633
6 39 Ryan Newman US ARMY Chevrolet 28.497 189.494
4 7 9 Marcos Ambrose Stanley Ford 28.501 189.467
8 2 Brad Keselowski Miller Lite Dodge 28.514 189.381
5 9 1 Jamie McMurray Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats Chevrolet 28.527 189.294
10 48 Jimmie Johnson Lowe's/Kobalt Tools Chevrolet 28.529 189.281
6 11 27 Paul Menard Quaker State/Menards Chevrolet 28.559 189.082
12 22 AJ Allmendinger Shell Pennzoil Dodge 28.568 189.023
7 13 11 Denny Hamlin FedEx Office/March of Dimes Toyota 28.589 188.884
14 20 Joey Logano Dollar General Toyota 28.601 188.805
8 15 29 Kevin Harvick Budweiser Chevrolet 28.624 188.653
16 88 Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Diet Mountain Dew/National Guard Chevrolet 28.656 188.442
9 17 18 Kyle Busch Interstate Batteries Toyota 28.678 188.298
18 15 Clint Bowyer 5-hour Energy Toyota 28.679 188.291
10 19 21 Trevor Bayne(i) Motorcraft/Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center Ford 28.695 188.186
20 99 Carl Edwards Fastenal Ford 28.730 187.957
11 21 34 David Ragan Scorpion Truck Bed Liners Ford 28.743 187.872
22 13 Casey Mears GEICO Ford 28.752 187.813
12 23 43 Aric Almirola Smithfield Ford 28.762 187.748
24 31 Jeff Burton Caterpillar Chevrolet 28.773 187.676
13 25 42 Juan Pablo Montoya Target Chevrolet 28.794 187.539
26 78 Regan Smith Furniture Row/Farm American Chevrolet 28.832 187.292
14 27 51 Kurt Busch Phoenix Construction Services, Inc. Chevrolet 28.849 187.182
28 83 Landon Cassill Burger King/Dr. Pepper Toyota 28.860 187.110
15 29 14 Tony Stewart Mobil1AdvancedFuelEcnmy/OfficeDpt Chev 28.878 186.994
30 47 Bobby Labonte Bush's Beans/Tom Thumb Toyota 28.880 186.981
16 31 10 David Reutimann Accell Construction Chevrolet 28.929 186.664
32 26 Josh Wise # Morristown Driver's Service Ford 28.976 186.361
17 33 98 Michael McDowell Curb Records Ford 29.044 185.925
34 24 Jeff Gordon DuPont Chevrolet 29.094 185.605
18 35 38 David Gilliland Mod Space Ford 29.094 185.605
36 49 JJ Yeley JPO Absorbents Toyota 29.104 185.542
19 37 93 Travis Kvapil Dr. Pepper Toyota 29.159 185.192
38 95 Scott Speed TWD Drywall Ford 29.170 185.122
20 39 32 Reed Sorenson(i) JaniKing Ford 29.217 184.824
40 23 Scott Riggs North TX Pipe/Embassy Suites Chevrolet 29.229 184.748
21 41 36 Dave Blaney JimmieJohnsonsAnythingWithAnEngine Chev Owner Points
42 33 Tony Raines Precon Marine Chevrolet Owner Points
22 43 19 Mike Bliss(i) Humphrey Smith Racing, LLC Toyota 29.232 184.729
Did Not Qualify: # 30 David Stremme; # 87 Joe Nemechek(i); # 74 Stacy Compton.
Manufacturer Starting Lineup DNQs Manufacturer Starting Lineup DNQs
Chevrolet 17 1 Ford 13 0
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