A wild Stadium Super Trucks qualifying took place on the streets of Nashville as less than half a second separated five drivers vying for the top spot on Friday. By the end, Robert Stout won his first career Fastest Qualifier with a time of 1:54.1886.
Stout, winner of Nashville Race #2 in 2021, was the strongest performer throughout the session as he led for much of it with Gavin Harlien in tow. However, Ryan Beat, 2021 Fastest Qualifier Matt Brabham, and Max Gordon had other plans in the final three minutes as the trio surpassed Harlien. Brabham and Gordon then out-paced Stout before the countdown clock hit zero to signify the field had one last lap to complete before qualifying ended.
It was on said lap that Stout set his final flying run, recording a time that knocked Gordon off the top spot by just .2847 of a second. Gordon himself barely held off Brabham for runner-up.
Beat qualified fourth for his first SST start since the 2019 season opener. Harlien rounded out the top five .3664 back of Stout.
“Haven’t been in the truck in two years and was able to put up P4 so really happy about that,” Beat said in an Instagram Story. “Obviously, right there time-wise with all the top guys who race this stuff every weekend.”
The second half of the ten-driver field trailed Stout by over three seconds, with Stanton Barrett placing sixth at 1:57.3857. Ben Maier, Zoey Edenholm, Cleetus McFarland, and Bill Hynes followed. McFarland and Hynes both dealt with truck issues on their runs, with the former suffering a blown transmission.
“I was in the other truck and the power steering was bad on that one,” Hynes explained in an impromptu interview with Beat. “Then I went into my backup, had to pull the backup off the trailer like Ricky Bobby, but that one was still prepped from last race so it had the old tyres and old brakes on it so I was just taking it easy, learning the track.”
Race #1 is scheduled for Saturday at 6:15 PM Central Time. Sunday will see Race #2 at 5:05 PM.
UPDATE: The article originally listed the qualifying times created using the NTT IndyCar Series’ timing loop, which begins at the exit of turn nine, while SST officially starts its lap times upon crossing the start/finish line. The unofficial times using the IndyCar scoring line are listed beneath the official results for preservation purposes.
|2||77||Max Gordon||1:54.4733||+ .2847|
|3||83||Matt Brabham||1:54.5108||+ .3222|
|4||51||Ryan Beat||1:54.5539||+ .3653|
|5||55||Gavin Harlien||1:54.5550||+ .3664|
|6||F26||Stanton Barrett||1:57.3857||+ 3.1971|
|7||67||Ben Maier||1:57.7436||+ 3.5550|
|8||21||Zoey Edenholm||1:58.8870||+ 4.6984|
|9||1776||Cleetus McFarland||1:59.4542||+ 5.2656|
|10||57||Bill Hynes||2:01.2930||+ 7.1044|
Unofficial times (IndyCar timing loop)
|2||83||Matt Brabham||1:54.369||+ .126|
|3||77||Max Gordon||1:54.455||+ .212|
|4||51||Ryan Beat||1:54.598||+ .355|
|5||55||Gavin Harlien||1:54.735||+ .492|
|6||F26||Stanton Barrett||1:57.241||+ 2.998|
|7||67||Ben Maier||1:57.770||+ 3.527|
|8||21||Zoey Edenholm||1:59.054||+ 4.811|
|9||57||Bill Hynes||1:59.639||+ 5.396|
|10||1776||Cleetus McFarland||2:00.383||+ 6.140|