Cooler heads and fresher tyres delivered Joey Logano his claimed his fifth Martinsville pole for the STP 500 at the .526-mile Martinsville Speedway.

The driver of the No. 22 Team Penske Ford Mustang only made one lap in Q2 in a bid to save his tyres for the final five-minute shootout for the pole. The move proved fruitful as he had the sixth quickest time and transferred with ease.

Aric Almirola set the pace early in his No. 10 Stewart Haas Racing Ford Mustang driven by Aric Almirola. The two-time Cup race winner laid down a consistent set of laps with a quickest one being 19.393s.

Logano bided his time and first delivered a lap just .002 of a second shy of Almirola’s time. He threw down the gauntlet a lap later with a lap of 19.356s to dispatch Almirola and take his first pole of the season.

With qualifying being so key at Martinsville, Logano noted that his strategic decision was all part of the plan.

“You just have to be so precise, and you’re pushing yourself so hard in the corners and a mistake has such a big penalty when you get loose and then you’re right on the edge of the tires and you go over the edge a little bit,” said Logano, who won last year’s fall race at Martinsville.

“It’s the difference between qualifying first and eighth or ninth because the field is so close. It’s awesome to get another pole and hopefully we can top it off with another win."

Almirola’s second-place run locks out the front row for Ford for the second time this year and gives the 11-year series veteran his best start at Martinsville.

Team Penske’s Brad Keselowski and Stewart Haas Racing’s Kevin Harvick completed a 1-4 sweep for Ford and filled out the second row as five-time Martinsville winner Denny Hamlin carried the flag for Toyota and Joe Gibbs Racing in fifth place.

William Byron was the quickest Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet Camaro and was followed by the fellow Chevys of Chip Ganassi Racing’s Kyle Larson and fellow Hendrick driver Chase Elliott.

Martin Truex, Jr. made it two Joe Gibbs Racing Toyotas in the top ten and Daniel Suarez was the third Stewart Haas Racing Ford in the top ten.

Clint Bowyer barely missed out on making it four SHR Ford Mustangs in the top ten and will start 11th while nine-time Martinsville winner Jimmie Johnson will start 12th.

Kyle Busch's four-race streak of making it into Q3 came to an end as an ill-handing No. 18 M&Ms Chocolate Bar Toyota Camry relegated him to a 14th place starting spot.

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