Casey Mears is ready to experience all the benefits of winning the pole at Pocono Raceway. He'll start in clean air with an unobstructed view.
"For the first time, I expect to see no one in front of me," a smiling Mears said.
Mears, driving a Dodge for Target Chip Ganassi Racing, turned a lap of 171.720 mph Friday for his first NASCAR career pole in 56 tries. He topped the fourth-place start he earned last year in Chicago.
"It's such gratification to finally get a pole," he said.
Drizzle and heavy fog shortened practice to an hour and delayed qualifying for Sunday's Pennsylvania 500. But it didn't bother Mears, nephew of four-time Indianapolis 500 winner Rick Mears.
"I feel like we had a car that could have been a top-five," he said.
Joe Nemechek, who posted the best practice time, was second in a Chevrolet at 171.654 and Kurt Busch third in a Ford at 171.540.
In local racing news, Ransomville and Lancaster canceled their programs Friday due to rain.