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Busch picks up Coors Light Pole Award in search of Brickyard defense
RELATED: Full starting lineup " See the full field SPEEDWAY, Ind. – A sweep at Indianapolis Motor Speedway is nothing new to Kyle Busch. But this year, he started early. With a lap at 184.634 mph (48.745 seconds) in the final round of Saturday's knockout qualifying, Busch claimed the pole position for Sunday’s Crown Royal 400 (3 p.m. ET on NBCSN, IMS, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). Earlier in the day, the driver who swept both the NASCAR Sprint Cup and XFINITY Series races at Indy last year earned the pole award ahead of the heat races prior to Saturday afternoon’s Lilly Diabetes 250 XFINITY race. But the Sprint Cup pole that completed the Saturday sweep was special, because it was the first for Busch at the vaunted Brickyard. "I haven't been great at qualifying here, but the guys gave me a great piece this time around, and I'm real pumped about that," said Busch, who claimed his second Coors Light Pole Award of the season and the 19th of his career. "We're starting first in both of these (races), and hopefully we can end that way. "It means a lot (to win the pole). It's definitely pretty special to be running the way that we're running and to have the success that we've had here the last couple of years at Indy, and I’d love nothing more than to try to win here again." Busch’s No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota was .023 seconds faster than the No. 19 of teammate Carl Edwards (184.547 mph). "I was happy with my lap," Edwards said. "I was surprised Kyle got me. That was a good lap for him – I mean, that was a good lap that he ran because I felt like my lap was pretty good – but, yeah, it's frustrating right now to be second because it's so close, and the pole position is obviously huge here. "But by tomorrow, the race gets started and I think I'll be pretty happy with that starting spot, so just good job by all my guys." Making his last appearance at Indy as a Sprint Cup Series driver, Tony Stewart earned the third starting spot with a lap at 184.328 mph and knew exactly where he had lost critical speed. "I just wish I could do lap three (final round) one more time and not clip the apron in (Turn) 4," Stewart said. "I think we could have been on the pole." RELATED: Stewart discusses his qualifying effort Denny Hamlin qualified fourth, giving JGR three of the top four spots. Brad Keselowski in fifth has the top Ford. Ryan Newman , Kevin Harvick , Martin Truex Jr. , Jamie McMurray and Kyle Larson will start from positions six through 10, respectively. The time trials were a disappointment for the Hendrick Motorsports drivers, who failed to place a car in the top 12. Jimmie Johnson ran the fastest lap of the day in the first of three rounds, touring the 2.5-mile speedway in 48.435 seconds (185.816 mph). But the six-time series champion failed to advance beyond the second round, losing the 12th and final position to Kurt Busch by .008 seconds. Johnson will start 13th, Chase Elliott 15th and Jeff Gordon , subbing for Dale Earnhardt Jr. , who is out with concussion-like symptoms, claimed the 21st spot on the grid. "I felt really comfortable right there," said Gordon, who was 15th fastest in the first round. "I feel like today I’m much calmer than I was yesterday (in practice). Usually, my heart is beating more for qualifying than it is for practice, but that wasn't the case. "So, today I feel more relaxed and comfortable in the car. I hope to feel the same way tomorrow. Tomorrow's challenge is going to be being around traffic, and also trying to get the balance of the car right and do that when you're by yourself as well as when you're around other cars." Josh Wise failed to make the 40-car field. </p>
Johnson looks to cure cold spell at the Brickyard
RELATED: Johnson through the years " See all the winners at the Brickyard SPEEDWAY, Ind. – Jimmie Johnson looked comfortable and calm taking questions from the media Friday morning at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The six-time Sprint Cup Series champion's No. 48 Lowe’s Red Vest Chevrolet was fastest in the day's opening practice here and seventh quickest in final practice. The historically tough 2.5-mile track has been a positive outlet for Johnson. His success at Indianapolis – four wins – is undeniable, but it is also sporadic. And overdue. Johnson won three times at Indy in four years between 2006-2009 – a mark both unmatched and highly impressive. He added a fourth victory in 2012 and then nearly a fifth in 2013 when he finished runner-up. Only Jeff Gordon (five wins) has won more here. The flip side of the success is that three times Johnson has finished 36th or worse. He was 14th and 15th in his last two races at Indy. And his need to add another win here in Sunday's Crown Royal presents the Combat Wounded Coalition 400 at the Brickyard (NBCSN, IMS, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) is as much about turning his season around in pursuit of a record-tying seventh NASCAR Sprint Cup Series title as it is attaining Indianapolis-specific glory. "We love big events, that's one thing about Hendrick Motorsports,’" Johnson allowed, smiling. "We look at the 500 and the 400 and all big races as an opportunity; and are excited for it." Johnson was the first driver in 2016 to collect multiple trophies winning the second week of the season at Atlanta and then again three weeks later at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. But in the last 10 races, he's crashed out three times and had only a single top-10 finish – a third-place finish at Charlotte in the Coca-Cola 600 . In fact, four of his finishes in this stretch have been 25th or worse. Before a 12th- place finish from the pole position at New Hampshire last week, Johnson uncharacteristically crashed out in back-to-back races with a 35th- place showing at Daytona and 32nd at Kentucky. He's currently eighth in the points standings, however, he is fourth on the Chase Grid because of his multiple wins. "I guess last week is kind of a good example of some of the difficulties we've had," Johnson said of New Hampshire. "We had competitive cars all running in the top 11 and in one corner we lose two of them. "It's been tough, but I think we have a good foundation to build from. We have respectable finishes in our cars, but nobody wants to be a decent finisher or a respectable finisher. We all want to dominate. And, we're working real hard on all fronts; from our engine shop, chassis shop, aero, teams, pit stops, and all of it." Contrary to what other teams may be experiencing, Johnson said it's not that his team isn't trying hard enough to return to form. It may be they are trying too hard . "And that's the problem," Johnson said. "I've been at 110 percent and you make too many mistakes there. And I think our team has, too. So, that's one thing we have recognized and we're going to really try to dial back and make sure that we run where we should. "If we have a fifth place car that week, let's be sure that we at least finish fifth. Maybe there's some opportunities to give us a chance to win, but stop making mistakes. And, I've got to do that, first and foremost." Johnson said he was even open to having the team’s "new driver" Jeff Gordon give feedback on the cars since Gordon – who retired last year – is filling in for Dale Earnhardt Jr. this week at Indianapolis and next week at Pocono while Earnhardt continues to recover from concussion-like symptoms. "We're months in, and I feel like all the drivers have expressed where we could be stronger and what we might need, but a fresh set of eyes and I guess it is kind of biased, but versus the four drivers in unbiased evaluation of the car and where we stack-up and how the engine feels compared to others," Johnson said of possibly getting Gordon's opinion. "And Jeff has had a unique opportunity to see the sport from a totally different angle; and certainly watching cars and I know he's formed some opinions watching other race cars and where the Toyotas might beat us. So, to be able to sit in the car and look for those opportunities and moments, I think will be helpful for us, for sure." The recent struggles are certainly an unfamiliar position for team owner Rick Hendrick, who was just selected for the 2017 NASCAR Hall of Fame class. He's grown much more accustomed to winning championships or at the very least challenging for titles. Recently his team has been challenging simply to finish a race. But righting the course is something everyone expects. And the trick is doing it sooner than later. "It seems like when it rains, it pours," Hendrick said. "I think at Daytona we wrecked three or four cars. And then we went to Kentucky and wrecked again. We were in good shape in New Hampshire, but wrecked again. I've been doing this long enough that you can't stay on top forever. You have to work hard to get back. And I think we've made a lot of improvements. "I think we'll see some, hopefully, this weekend. But, you never like having a curveball. This is kind of one of the toughest things you have to go through as one of your star drivers can't drive. And so, the encouraging news is that everybody just stepped up and is working harder. "We're determined to work in every area from the engine to the chassis and aero and everything. And the teams are excited. It's kind of our 'refuse to lose' belief. But we didn't need this, for sure. We didn't need the wrecks we've gone through. Our place looks like a salvage yard where all of the cars have been tore up. But that just makes us dig harder." And Johnson appears ready to lead the charge. "We're all highly inspired to get back on top of the mountain, that is where we feel we should be at Hendrick Motorsports," Johnson said. "We've just got to clean it up on all fronts. Hopefully we have it all together here and can win."
Biffle earns first Coors Light Pole Award of '16 at Daytona
RELATED: Starting lineup " See all 40 cars DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Greg Biffle came out of nowhere. Winless since 2013 and without a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series pole since the fall Charlotte race in 2012, the driver of the No. 16 Roush Fenway Racing Ford scorched Daytona International Speedway on Friday to claim the top starting spot for Saturday night’s Coke Zero 400 (at 7:45 p.m. ET on NBC). In the second and final round of knockout qualifying, Biffle toured the 2.5-mile restrictor-plate track in 46.643 seconds (192.955 mph) to wrestle the Coors Light Pole Award from former RFR teammate Carl Edwards (192.748 mph) by .050 seconds. The pole was Biffle’s second at a plate track, the first coming when he led the field to green in the 2004 Daytona 500 , not quite eight months after Biffle won the only plate race of his career -- the 2003 Coke Zero 400 . Both were career-firsts for the Biff. All told, Biffle has won 13 poles in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, but Friday’s was particularly significant because of the boost it give his organization, which has been struggling for the past few years to find speed in the wake of the departure of veterans Matt Kenseth and Edwards to Joe Gibbs Racing . "It is a huge confidence-builder, and coming out of here with a good finish, that’s a lot of momentum for the team," Biffle said. "Qualifying on the pole, getting a good run and moving on to the next race -- we need that. "We need those good finishes and momentum and encouragement. Winning the pole is all smiles on those guys pushing the car up there and getting the pictures. They’re pumped right now. We’ll be ready to go tomorrow night." In a backup car with no practice laps because of a wreck in Saturday morning’s practice, Kyle Busch (192.336 mph) qualified third. Biffle’s teammate, Ricky Stenhouse Jr . (192.320 mph), earned the fourth starting spot, followed by Brad Keselowski (192.254 mph) and Austin Dillon (192.254 mph), who lost the fifth spot to Keselowski on an owner points tiebreaker. Defending race winner Dale Earnhardt Jr . failed to make the top 12 and will start 16th. Jimmie Johnson (eighth) was the only Hendrick Motorsports driver to advance to the second round, just as Kurt Busch (10th) was the only Stewart-Haas Racing entry to do so. Earnhardt, however, wasn’t particularly concerned about his starting position. "I think we’ll be good," he said. "We worked on our car to try and help it drive better. That might take some straight-line speed out of it, but it’s going to hopefully help us be able to make moves we need to make in the race. "It's going to be slick in the race, and handling is going to be real important. I'm more concerned really with the car driving good. Might not be the fastest car out there, (but) that's not the car that is going to win the race. I think (that’s going to be) the guy that's got the best handling package. This place is going to be pretty slick." Biffle was fastest in both rounds of qualifying, pacing the first session at 192.629 mph. "After that first session, I knew we had to be worried about (Greg)," Edwards said. "We ran a really good lap in the second session, but those guys were fast. They put the hard work in, they deserve it and I know how hard those guys work over there. "And I guess in a way, it’s cool to see them have success. You hate to get beat by anyone, but knowing those guys and knowing how much they work, it’s good to see them have this day."
Logano lands Coors Light Pole at Michigan
RELATED: Starting lineup " See all 40 cars Joey Logano zoomed to the Coors Light Pole Award in Friday qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Michigan International Speedway . Logano drove the Team Penske No. 22 Ford to a best lap of 199.557 mph in the third and final session. The pole is Logano's second of the season, second at the 2-mile track and 16th of his Sprint Cup career. He won from the pole at Michigan in August of 2013. Logano had settled for the second starting spot five times in 14 races this season. "It just feels really good because the last couple of weeks we've come in second in the final round," Logano said. "We've been qualifying really well with this 22 car, we just haven't had the pole, so it's really nice to finally break through and get a pole with this new package. It really goes to show how great this Team Penske is on preparing cars from the shop and really not knowing what they're coming to. It has some great adjustability in it and a fast car, obviously." "Couldn't be more proud of the team with our qualifying efforts as of recently, it's just we finally won the right round -- the last one." Martin Truex Jr ., the Coca-Cola 600 winner, will start second in Sunday's FireKeepers Casino 400 (1 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) after posting a lap of 199.016 mph in the Furniture Row Racing No. 78 Toyota. Three-time series champion Tony Stewart was third, marking his best qualifying effort in seven races so far this season after returning in April from an offseason back injury. Denny Hamlin (198.774 mph) and rookie Ryan Blaney (198.588 mph) rounded out the top five in qualifying. The three rounds marked the first qualifying session under new aerodynamic rules designed to reduce downforce and sideforce. The pole-winning speed was well under the track record of 206.558 mph set by Jeff Gordon in August 2014. Two former Michigan winners -- Kevin Harvick and Dale Earnhardt Jr . -- failed to advance past the opening 20-minute round of group qualifying. Qualifying runs for Harvick's Stewart-Haas Racing No. 4 Chevrolet were twice interrupted by red flags -- one for a stray duct left as debris early in the session by Jamie McMurray 's car, and another for a crash with in Turn 3 by David Ragan with 4:21 left. A third effort by Harvick was only 29th-fastest, just outside the 24-driver cut. Earnhardt managed only the 27th-fastest lap. RELATED: Bad luck bites Harvick in qualifying Kurt Busch , the defending race winner and last weekend's victor at Pocono, will start 17th after missing the 12-driver cut in the second round of qualifying. Denny Hamlin topped the first round, and Joey Logano paced the second round in the elimination-style qualifying session. Qualifying was delayed by 15 minutes because of a backlog of cars trying to pass inspection. NASCAR competition officials said several teams struggled to comply with new rules regarding "skew," or rear-axle offset. Four drivers -- Michael Annett , Greg Biffle , Brad Keselowski and Martin Truex Jr . -- did not have cars present on the grid once qualifying got going at 4:30 p.m. ET. Sunday's 400-mile event is the 15th of 36 races this year for the Sprint Cup Series.
Biffle claims first Coors Light Pole Award since 2012
NASCAR.com's Jonathan Merryman talks to Greg Biffle after earning his first Coors Light Pole Awards since Charlotte in 2012.
Carl corners the field, gets Coors Light Pole Award
NASCAR.com's Jonathan Merryman talks to Carl Edwards after he won the Coors Light Pole Award at Sonoma Raceway.
Truex Jr. earns Coors Light Pole for Coca-Cola 600
RELATED: Lineup " See each car in Sunday's race CONCORD, N.C. – Martin Truex Jr . crashed a Ford party on Thursday night, winning the pole for Sunday's Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway (6 p.m. ET, FOX, PRN, Sirius XM NASCAR Radio). With his team making adjustments to the No. 78 Furniture Row Racing Toyota throughout the qualifying session, Truex saved his best lap for the round that counted, covering the 1.5-mile distance in 28.077 seconds (192.328 mph) to edge Team Penske Ford driver Joey Logano (192.007 mph) by .047 seconds for the top starting spot in NASCAR's longest race. The Coors Light Pole Award was Truex's second of the season and the ninth of his career. Both of the New Jersey driver's poles this year have come on 1.5-mile tracks, the previous one at Kansas Speedway earlier this month. "We really had to work pretty hard for it today," said Truex, whose lap in the final round of qualifying was .27 seconds faster than his fastest practice lap. "It was just one of those Charlotte deals where the track was continuously changing. "We were just chasing the race track and changing the car and really never got it close to right until that last run. I'm really just proud of the effort and proud of all my guys for that. It feels good – 600 miles, that first pit stall (the pole winner's prerogative) … We're going to be on pit road a lot on Sunday night, and that's certainly going to be an advantage. "Hopefully, we can take advantage of it and make it work for us." Logano led both the first and second rounds but couldn’t match Truex’s top speed in the third and final session. "I got a little bit tight landing in (Turn) 1 and then a little bit free off (the corner)," Logano said. "It wasn't much. And then (Turns) 3 and 4, I actually thought was a pretty good corner. "So I would say most of it was down in 1 and 2 – probably at landing and through the center is where I lost most of my momentum. It's not much. Half-a-tenth of a second doesn't take long." Logano was the best of the Ford drivers, who held three of the four top spots in the first round of knockout qualifying and swept the top four in the second. In the final round, Fords were second, third and fifth. Ricky Stenhouse Jr . qualified third at 191.428 mph, followed by Denny Hamlin (191.388 mph) and Brad Keselowski (190.968 mph). Joining Stenhouse in the top 10 were his Roush Fenway Racing teammates Greg Biffle (sixth) and Trevor Bayne (10th), marking the first time since the April race at Texas in 2014 that three RFR cars have made the final round of knockout qualifying. Dale Earnhardt Jr . will start 25th after failing to advance past the first round by .014 seconds. Matt Kenseth (27th), Austin Dillon (28th) and Kasey Kahne (29th) also will have to come from deep in the field after disappointing efforts in time trials. Kurt Busch , who topped the speed chart in opening practice with the fastest lap of the day (192.843 mph), will start 13th after failing to make the final round by .08 seconds.
NASCAR TV schedule: July 25-31
RELATED: Find NBCSN in your area All times ET Monday, July 25 6 a.m., WeatherTech SportsCar Championship: Lime Rock (re-air), FS1 7 a.m., NASCAR Victory Lap (re-air), NBCSN 8 a.m., NASCAR Victory Lap (re-air), NBCSN 9 a.m., NASCAR Victory Lane (re-air), FS1 Noon, NASCAR Victory Lap (re-air), NBCSN 3 p.m., NASCAR 120, NBCSN 5 p.m., NASCAR Race Hub, FS1 6 p.m., NASCAR America, NBCSN Tuesday, July 26 7 a.m., NASCAR The List: Dale Earnhardt St. Moments (re-air), NBCSN 7:30 a.m., NASCAR America (re-air), NBCSN 8 a.m., NASCAR America (re-air), NBCSN 5 p.m., NASCAR Race Hub, FS1 5:30 p.m., NASCAR The List: Daytona Memories (re-air), NBCSN 6 p.m., NASCAR America, NBCSN 7 p.m., NASCAR Whelen Series: All-Star Shootout, New Hampshire (taped), NBCSN 7:30 p.m., NASCAR The List: Dale Earnhardt Sr. Memories (re-air), NBCSN Wednesday, July 27 7 a.m., NASCAR America (re-air), NBCSN 8 a.m., NASCAR America (re-air), NBCSN 5 p.m., NASCAR RaceHub, FS1 5 p.m., NASCAR The List: Greatest Finishes (re-air), NBCSN 5:30 p.m., NASCAR The List: Memorable Moments (re-air), NBCSN 6 p.m., NASCAR America, NBCSN Thursday, July 28 7:30 a.m., WeatherTech SportsCar Championship: Lime Rock (re-air), FS1 7 a.m., NASCAR America (re-air), NBCSN 8 a.m., NASCAR America (re-air), NBCSN 5 p.m., NASCAR RaceHub, FS1 5 p.m., NASCAR The List (re-air), NBCSN 6 p.m., NASCAR America, NBCSN Friday, July 29 7 a.m., NASCAR America (re-air), NBCSN 11 a.m., NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice, NBCSN 12:30 p.m., NASCAR Camping World Truck Series practice, FS1 3 p.m., NASCAR Camping World Truck Series final practice, FS1 4 p.m. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying, NBCSN 5:30 p.m., NASCAR XFINITY Series practice, NBCSN 7 p.m., NASCAR XFINITY Series final practice, NBCSN 8:30 p.m., NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice (re-air), NBCSN 10 p.m., NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying (re-air), NBCSN Saturday, July 30 9 a.m., NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Keystone Light Pole Qualifying, FS1 10:30 a.m., NASCAR Whelen Series: All-Star Shootout, New Hampshire (re-air), NBCSN 11 a.m., NASCAR Sprint Cup Series final practice, NBCSN 12:30 p.m., NASCAR Camping World Truck Series SetUp, FS1 1 p.m., NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Pocono Mountains 150 , FS1 2:30 p.m., NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Post-Race, FS1 4 p.m., NASCAR XFINITY Coors Light Pole Qualifying, NBCSN 6 p.m., NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying (re-air), NBCSN 7:30 p.m., NASCAR XFINITY Series Countdown, NBCSN 8 p.m., NASCAR XFINITY Series U.S. Cellular 250, NBCSN 11 p.m., NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Pocono Mountains 150 (re-air), FS1 Sunday, July 31 6:30 a.m., NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Pocono Mountains 150 (re-air), FS2 9 a.m., NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Pocono Mountains 150 (re-air), FS1 10:30 a.m., NASCAR RaceDay, FS1 10:30 a.m., NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying (re-air), NBCSN Noon, Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge: Lime Rock Park (taped), FS1 Noon, NASCAR America Sunday, NBCSN 1 p.m., NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Countdown, NBCSN 1:30 p.m., NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pennsylvania 400, NBCSN 5 p.m., NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Post-Race Show, NBCSN 9 p.m., NASCAR Victory Lane, FS1 &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;nbsp;
Full schedule for Pocono and Iowa
RELATED: Find NBCSN in your area " Watch live online at NBCSports.com The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series will gather for a doubleheader weekend at Pocono Raceway while the NASCAR XFINITY Series is at Iowa Speedway this week. Check out the full weekend schedule below. Note: All times are ET FRIDAY, JULY 29: ON TRACK: POCONO -- 11 a.m.-12:25 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series first practice, NBCSN ( Follow live ) -- 12:30-1:55 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series first practice, FS1 ( Follow live ) -- 3-3:55 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series final practice, FS1 ( Follow live ) -- 4:15 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying, NBCSN ( Follow live ) GARAGECAM ( Watch live ) -- 10:30 a.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series -- noon: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series ON TRACK: IOWA -- 5-5:50 p.m.: NASCAR XFINITY Series first practice, NBCSN will start coverage at 5:30 p.m. on a delay ( Follow live ) -- 7-8:20 p.m.: NASCAR XFINITY Series final practice, NBCSN ( Follow live ) SATURDAY, JULY 30: ON TRACK: POCONO -- 9:05 a.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Keystone Light Pole Qualifying, FS1 ( Follow live ) -- 11 a.m.-12:20 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series final practice, NBCSN ( Follow live ) -- 1 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Pocono Mountains 150 (60 laps, 150 miles), FS1 ( Follow live ) ON TRACK: IOWA -- 4:15 p.m.: NASCAR XFINITY Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying, NBCSN ( Follow live ) -- 8 p.m.: NASCAR XFINITY Series U.S. Cellular 250 (250 laps, 218.75 miles), NBCSN ( Follow live ) SUNDAY, JULY 31: ON TRACK: POCONO -- 1:30 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pennsylvania 400 (160 laps, 400 miles), NBCSN ( Follow live )
Kurt Busch flies to Coors Light Pole in Vegas
RELATED: See the full field " Starting lineup Hometown favorite Kurt Busch roared to the Coors Light Pole Award in Friday qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series at Las Vegas Motor Speedway . Busch pushed the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 41 Chevrolet to a fast lap of 196.328 mph, snagging the first starting spot for Sunday's Kobalt 400 (3:30 p.m. ET, FOX, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). The pole position was Busch's second of the season, second at the 1.5-mile Sin City track and 21st of his Sprint Cup career. "Man, I wasn't going to lift for anything," Busch said. "I was giving it all I had. I'm really proud of the team to help me get to that third round. I was overdriving the car and I needed to settle in and (crew chief) Tony Gibson made a great adjustment in that last round. I was hoping to put on a show for the home crowd, get the pole, but now we've got to go to work tomorrow. I hope we can get the car dialed in for long run speed for Sunday." Joey Logano qualified for the second starting spot with a best lap of 195.851 mph in the Team Penske No. 22 Ford. Matt Kenseth qualified third in the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 20 Toyota. Brad Keselowski , Logano's Penske teammate, secured the fourth starting spot with Austin Dillon completing the top five in the Richard Childress Racing No. 3 Chevrolet. Kevin Harvick , the defending race winner, was sixth-fastest in the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 4 Chevy. Four-time Vegas winner Jimmie Johnson , who prevailed last week at Atlanta, landed the 11th starting spot in the Hendrick Motorsports No. 48 Chevrolet. Daytona 500 winner Denny Hamlin , driving a backup Joe Gibbs Racing No. 11 after a crash in Thursday testing, qualified ninth. Carl Edwards failed to advance out of the second of three rounds of elimination-style qualifying after hitting the wall in Turn 2. His Joe Gibbs Racing crew unloaded a reserve car to prepare for Sunday's 400-miler, the third premier-series race of the season. "It hit hard , bounced up the race track and man, that was it," Edwards said after emerging unhurt. RELATED: Edwards to backup car after qualifying wreck The crash was to Brian Vickers ' detriment. The fill-in driver for the injured Tony Stewart in the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 14 Chevy had a fast lap scrubbed off when the red flag flew for Edwards' incident early in the 10-minute segment. Stewart, back at the track for the second straight week as he recovers from a broken vertebra, was seen with crew chief Mike Bugarewicz arguing the team's case to NASCAR officials on pit road. The opening 20-minute qualifying session was also marked by a pair of incidents. Jamie McMurray tagged the outside wall at Turn 4's exit with his Chip Ganassi Racing No. 1 Chevrolet. And Keselowski's crew was forced to change a tire on the Team Penske No. 2 Ford after a piece of stray metal caused a flat. The team was allowed to make the adjustment between rounds without penalty. Busch, a Las Vegas native, also earned the designation of fastest qualifier with a best lap of 196.378 mph in the opening session, a shade better than his pole-winning lap. Busch's speed eclipsed the former track record of 194.678 mph set by Jeff Gordon at the 1.5-mile venue last March.