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Press Snoop: Busch takes Infineon pole.

KURT BUSCH/#2 Miller Lite Dodge has the pole for Sunday's NASCAR Nextel Cup Dodge/Save Mart 350 race at Infineon Raceway with a lap of 76.987/93.055 mph. This is his fifth pole in 200 Cup races. The Qualifying Track Record is still held by JEFF GORDON/#24 Dupont, whose 2005 lap was 75.950/94.325 mph. Gordon qualified eleventh.

Busch was complimentary of his crew chief and team for getting the setups right for the ever changing track conditions. "There's a little bit of Rusty in this car, but there's a whole lot of ROY McCAULEY (referring to his Crew Chief, in his first year as a Cup Chief). If I can drive half the candle that Rusty held, we'll be all right."

Busch said he liked the ringers, (which he called hired guns,) "coming over to our series and what's really scary these guys continue to develop and get better.

Busch admitted that a recent article in GQ, stating he was one of top ten most hated athletes, wasn't the reason but was a catalyst in his moving forward with image-building efforts such as lots of public appearances and starting his charitable foundation. Busch presents differently these days, with his starched white shirts, and his clean-cut appearance.

JAMIE McMURRAY/#26 Crown Royal Ford was second fastest, followed by KEVIN HARVICK/#29 GM Goodwrench Dodge.

RYAN NEWMAN/#12 Alltel Dodge was fourth fastest.

The top Road Racing Ringer was BORIS SAID/#60 Sobe-No Fear Ford in fifth place. He was pretty happy and put in a good word for his energy drink sponsor, saying "We're going to clip the wings off that bull" referring to a rival energy drink.

The welcome breeze cooled the weather down to a tolerable 87 degrees F, with a track temperature of 122 degrees F.

There were mixed results for the other Ringers. P.J. JONES/#4 AERO Exhaust Chevrolet was fifteenth fastest. RON FELLOWS/#32 Tide Chevrolet was seventeenth.

SCOTT PRUETT/#40 Coors Light Dodge will start twenty-seventh, perhaps not as well as he expected. More bad news for him - the top three Rolex Series Daytona Prototypes were disqualified at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for failing post-qualifying technical inspection. This means Pruett and co-driver LUIS DIAZ/#1 CompUSA Lexus Riley will start at the back instead of on the front row. All three cars were Riley chassis and disqualified for being one mm too wide - the width of three sheets of paper. PATRICK LONG/#23 Alex Job Racing Crawford Porsche DP will start on pole, with ALEX GURNEY/#99 GAINSCO Riley Pontiac will be with him on the front row. Former Pole Sitter, teenaged COLIN BRAUN/#76 Krohn Racing Ford Riley said "It will make for a fun race."

TOM HUBERT/#27 Chevrolet was thirtieth, followed by DAVID GILLILAND/#72 Dutch Quality Stone Dodge qualified thirty-first, good enough for him to make the field. Gilliland, who has won races in the NASCAR Winston West Series and won the 2005 NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown at Irwindale Speedway, has DOUG GEORGE as his crew chief. George was the 1995 Winston West Champion and 1990 NASCAR Southwest Tour champion.

TERRY LABONTE/#96 DLP Chevrolet was thirty-eighth.

Those not making the cut included JOHNNY MILLER/#34 Oak Gloves Chevrolet; CHRIS COOK/#49 DSI Dodge; TRAVIS KVAPIL/#78 Furniture; STANTON BARRETT/#95 Interush Chevrolet; and BRIAN SIMO/#61 Sobe-No Fear Chevrolet.

Saturday there will be two more Nextel Cup practices. The West Series will race, as will the two SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge classes.


Related Pictures

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Series championship contenders Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 AXALTA Chevrolet, Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevrolet, and Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, take part in pre-race ceremonies for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell Pennzoil Ford, and Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, race during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 AXALTA Chevrolet, and Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Denver Mattress Chevrolet, race during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, crosses the finish line to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, celebrates winning the series championship and the race with a burnout after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, celebrates winning the series championship and the race in Victory Lane after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, celebrates winning the series championship and the race with his team after the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Crispy Toyota, celebrates with the trophy in Victory Lane after winning the series championship and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, and Daniel Suarez, driver of the #18 ARRIS Toyota, lead the field on the first lap of the NASCAR XFINITY Series Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 21, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Chris Trotman/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Patriotic Chevrolet, and Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet, lead the field to the green flag at the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 15, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet, serves a pass-through penalty for a restart violation during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 15, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, and Austin Dillon, driver of the #33 Rheem Chevrolet, lead the field at the start of the NASCAR XFINITY Series DAV 200 Honoring America`s Veterans at Phoenix International Raceway on November 14, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR XFINITY Series DAV 200 Honoring America`s Veterans at Phoenix International Raceway on November 14, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, crosses the finish line to win the NASCAR XFINITY Series DAV 200 Honoring America`s Veterans at Phoenix International Raceway on November 14, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series DAV 200 Honoring America`s Veterans at Phoenix International Raceway on November 14, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, celebrates with the chequered flag after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series DAV 200 Honoring America`s Veterans at Phoenix International Raceway on November 14, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, celebrates with the chequered flag after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series DAV 200 Honoring America`s Veterans at Phoenix International Raceway on November 14, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Chase contender Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, qualifies for second position Friday, November 13, 2015 for Sunday`s final round of the Eliminator 8 NASCAR Sprint Cup Chase race at Phoenix International Raceway in Avondale, Arizona. Pole winner Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s Patriotic Chevrolet SS will join him on the front row Sunday. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)

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