Get the latest Matt Kenseth news, media, stats, and standings for the NASCAR Nationwide Series driver only on the official site of NASCAR.
Get the latest Matt Kenseth news, media, stats, and standings for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver only on the official site of NASCAR.
DeWalt reunites with Kenseth ; Stanley jumps on for Edwards' No. 19
Kenseth , Dollar General Literacy Foundation Donate $1,000, Case Of 80 Children’s Books To Each Of The Seven Local Elementary Schools Competing In Texas Motor Speedway’s “Speeding To Read” Program
Kenseth on Daytona qualifying: 'It was just such a mess'
Kyle Larson and Matt Kenseth discuss the new changes to qualifying at Talladega.
Matt Kenseth talks about clinching a spot in the Chase based on points while Denny Hamlin and Danica Patrick comment on their solid runs at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Chase standings leader wins pole at New Hampshire RELATED: Qualifying results LOUDON, N.H. -- You couldn't script a better beginning to Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup for Brad Keselowski , who showed no sign of stopping his relentless run toward a second championship on Friday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway . Fresh from a dramatic victory in last Sunday's first Chase race at Chicagoland Speedway , Keselowski blew away the track record in winning the pole for Sunday's Sylvania 300 at the Magic Mile (2 p.m. ET on ESPN). The Coors Light Pole Award was Keselowski's fifth of the season, the eight of his career and his third in 11 starts at the 1.058-mile flat track. In the second and final round of knockout qualifying, Keselowski covered the distance in 27.090 seconds (140.598 mph) to edge Jamie McMurray (140.437 mph) for the top starting spot by .031 seconds. Kevin Harvick qualified third for the second Chase race at 140.065 mph. "The kind of track is kind of right in my wheelhouse, right in our team’s wheelhouse," said Keselowski, who won the July race at New Hampshire in dominating fashion. "We had this race circled before the Chase started, and we felt decent about Chicago, but we really felt like this was a race of emphasis for us to get a win and get out of the first bracket (three-race elimination round). "It's good, right? We just want to keep it going." Despite the excellent performances of the first two weeks, Keselowski isn't ready to claim ownership of the title just yet. "With the resets (after each round), the success of today really means nothing come Homestead (where the four remaining eligible drivers will race for the title, with the highest finisher among the four claiming the prize)," Keselowski said. "It's great. It's positive momentum. It's everything you want to do, and it’s everything you think you should do. "But when it resets, it resets, and nothing that you've done in the past really matters, as long as you're eligible for the bracket. I'm a long, long way from using the word favorite or feeling overly confident." McMurray, who did not make the Chase field, was pleased with his effort in qualifying. "I felt like, in my first run, I didn't get everything out of the car and maybe left a little bit on the table," McMurray said. "The first run I didn't think I got it all, but the second run out (in the final round), the second lap was really good. "Honestly, I came off Turn 4 and tried to run three laps and tried to just drive a little bit harder, but the tires just wouldn’t hold up for another quick lap." Chase drivers who will start in the top 12 on Sunday include Denny Hamlin (fourth), Kyle Busch (fifth), Jimmie Johnson (sixth), Joey Logano (seventh), Carl Edwards (eighth), Ryan Newman (ninth) and Dale Earnhardt Jr . (11th) Keselowski led the first of the two qualifying sessions with a lap at 139.614 mph (27.281 seconds), a scant .005 seconds faster than the No. 99 of fellow Ford driver Edwards. All told, 26 drivers in the 30-minute first round broke the track qualifying record of 138.130 mph (27.574 seconds) set by Kyle Busch on July 11, 2014. Earnhardt Jr. was the 12th and last driver to advance to the second session with a lap at 138.987 mph (27.404 mph). Chase drivers Jeff Gordon (13th), Kurt Busch (15th), Matt Kenseth (16th), Kasey Kahne (17th), Aric Almirola (21st), Greg Biffle (26th) and AJ Allmendinger (27th) failed to advance to the 10-minute final round. Notes: The track qualifying record was the 19th set this year in Sprint Cup Series time trials, in the first year of the knockout format. ... Keselowski has accounted for four of those records. ... The last two times Keselowski has won a pole for a Sprint Cup race (at Kentucky and Richmond), he has also won the race. MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL CHASE COVERAGE • Chase hub page • Chase Grid games • #MyChaseNation
Joe Gibbs Racing driver's Chase confidence at a low after mediocre season RELATED: Play NASCAR Fantasy Live " Sign up for RaceView today BRISTOL, Tenn. -- Wins aren't the only thing that have been down for Matt Kenseth . His confidence in winning a second career NASCAR Sprint Cup Series title this year has also taken a bit of a tumble. The 2003 premier series champion returns to Bristol Motor Speedway as the defending Irwin Tools Night Race champion and the fifth-place driver in the points standings. At this point last year, he was sixth in the standings. His top-fives through 23 races? Eight this year, compared to five last season. The difference, of course, is victories. The 42-year-old had a series-leading four of them one year ago (five after the Bristol race) and has zero this year. His No. 20 Toyota has yet to take that sweet ride to Victory Lane, and really hasn't been close -- he has no runner-up showings and only two third-place results, which came in back-to-back weeks at Charlotte and Dover. "Last year we had four wins up to this point, were on a few poles, we led a ton of laps," Kenseth said. "Obviously we haven't performed like that (in 2014). Last year, the way we were performing, my confidence for winning a championship was way greater, of course. It should be pretty obvious. " … My confidence isn't near as high with how we're running at this point. I have a ton of confidence in my team and my organization, and my pit crew has been doing better than ever. We've just been off on speed a little bit." It's been that way for all of Joe Gibbs Racing , actually. It's an interesting dynamic with Kenseth easily the highest of the organization's three drivers in the points standings, but Kyle Busch (15th) and Denny Hamlin (20th) have a victory apiece. That victory guarantees Busch and Hamlin a spot in the postseason field -- provided they attempt to qualify for the remaining three races -- while Kenseth , although he's in a fine spot, has no such assurances. And just making the Chase isn't enough for Kenseth or his teammates, which is why the missing speed problem has become amplified. "Just because you're in the Chase doesn't mean you have a chance to win the championship," Kenseth said. "There's going to be a lot of cars in the Chase that aren't going to have a prayer. "Certainly with three weeks to go until the Chase, even if all three of us get in, we realize that we have to be running better to have a legitimate shot at winning (the title). And we're all working really hard at that." MORE: READ: Latest NASCAR news WATCH: Latest NASCAR video PLAY: NASCAR Fantasy Live FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView FULL SERIES COVERAGE • Latest news • Standings • Schedule
See the order the Sprint Cup drivers will roll off (Friday, 4:40 p.m. ET, FOX Sports 1) RELATED: Track your picks in the Perfect Chase Grid Challenge and Chase Battle Grid Presented by Toyota # Car Driver Team 1 9 Marcos Ambrose Stanley Ford 2 11 Denny Hamlin FedEx Ground Toyota 3 77 Corey Lajoie(i) Fochler Veterans Law Ford 4 32 Timmy Hill US Chrome Ford 5 36 Reed Sorenson American Muscle Driving Experience Chevrolet 6 66 Mike Wallace(i) Royal Teak Collection Toyota 7 13 Casey Mears Geico Chevrolet 8 42 Kyle Larson # Target Chevrolet 9 4 Kevin Harvick Budweiser Designate a Driver Chevrolet 10 55 Brian Vickers Aaron's Dream Machine Toyota 11 48 Jimmie Johnson Lowe's Chevrolet 12 43 Aric Almirola Smithfield Ford 13 41 Kurt Busch Haas Automation Chevrolet 14 27 Paul Menard Sylvania/Menards Chevrolet 15 10 Danica Patrick GoDaddy Chevrolet 16 47 AJ Allmendinger Bush's Beans Chevrolet 17 14 Tony Stewart Code 3 Associates/Mobil 1 Chevrolet 18 99 Carl Edwards Aflac Ford 19 78 Martin Truex Jr. Furniture Row Chevrolet 20 38 David Gilliland Clean Harbors Ford 21 31 Ryan Newman Quicken Loans Chevrolet 22 40 Landon Cassill(i) Snap Fitness Chevrolet 23 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. EcoPower Oil Ford 24 51 Justin Allgaier # PlanBSales.com Chevrolet 25 5 Kasey Kahne Time Warner Cable Chevrolet 26 24 Jeff Gordon Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet 27 83 Travis Kvapil Burger King Toyota 28 18 Kyle Busch M&M's Toyota 29 34 David Ragan Taco Bell Ford 30 23 Alex Bowman # Dr Pepper Toyota 31 15 Clint Bowyer 5-Hour Energy Toyota 32 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Diet Mountain Dew Chevrolet 33 98 Josh Wise Phil Parsons Racing Chevrolet 34 22 Joey Logano Shell Pennzoil Ford 35 26 Cole Whitt # Rinnai Toyota 36 3 Austin Dillon # Cheerios Chevrolet 37 2 Brad Keselowski Miller Lite Ford 38 33 David Stremme Little Joe's Autos Chevrolet 39 16 Greg Biffle Ortho Ford 40 1 Jamie McMurray Belkin/WEMO Chevrolet 41 20 Matt Kenseth Dollar General Toyota 42 7 Michael Annett # Feed the Children/Golden Corral Chevrolet 43 93 Clay Rogers Iowa City Capital Partners Toyota MORE: READ: Latest Chase news PLAY: Monitor your Chase Grid Game picks WATCH: Latest NASCAR video FOLLOW LIVE: Get RaceView