MATT KENSETH/#17 Pennzoil Ford Fusion is on the pole for the NASCAR Busch Series Arizona Travel 200 race at Phoenix International Raceway with a lap of 27.243/132.144 mph. Kenseth was one of the last to qualify Saturday morning under overcast skies but warm temperatures. He said "It was a good lap. I was surprised by the speed, but it was a good lap."
Second through tenth were: CARL EDWARDS/#60 Ameriquest Ford; KENNY WALLACE/#22 AutoZone Ford-who will race Cup full time next season; SHANE HUFFMAN/#88 NAVY Chevrolet Monte Carlo-who ran the Truck race, finishing twenty-eighth; DENNY HAMLIN/#20 Rockwell Chevrolet; KEVIN HARVICK/#21 US Coast Guard Chevrolet; PAUL MENARD/#11 Menards Chevrolet; GREG BIFFLE/#16 Ameriquest Ford; CASEY ATWOOD/#27 Kleenex Ford; and Busch Rookie STEVEN LEIHT/#90 citifinancial Ford.
Open wheel emigres, JUAN PABLO MONTOYA/#42 Texaco/Havoline Dodge and SAM HORNISH Jr/#39 Mobil 1 Dodge made the show. Montoya, running his third Busch race, qualified eleventh and Hornish will make his Busch debut from twenty-seventh on the grid.
Four drivers failed to make the show: MIKE SKINNER/#12 Dodge-who finished third in Friday night's Truck race; D.J. KENNINGTON/#72 Dodge; SHANE HALL/#49 Ford; and JOSH KRUG/#37 Chevrolet.
The Busch cars will run the same tire compound as the Cup cars so that could be good for the sixteen Busch drivers who race in Sunday's NASCAR Nextel Cup Checker Auto Parts 500 Race.
KYLE BUSCH/#5 Kellogg's Chevrolet is the Iron Man this weekend, running all three NASCAR top tier races, Trucks, Busch and Cup. He finished ninth in the Truck race after starting sixteenth. Kyle Busch will start thirty-first in the Busch race, and ninth in the Cup race, right behind his brother, KURT BUSCH/#2 Miller Lite Dodge.
Kyle Busch admits he's not liked in the garage. "I've just never really been liked. I don't have a problem with it. A lot of people understand and know that I came into this deal already on the downside. I already came in guilty by association through Kurt (Busch) and then being associated with Hendrick Motorsports. People who are around me and know me like me. I've got a whole team that's been with me for two straight years that don't want to go anywhere but stick with the #5 team. They've been talking about doing a crew swap and everybody said they'd leave if they did that. It's great to have that support behind me and all the backbone structure that goes with it."
Someone else who evidently likes Kyle is Maricopa County Sheriff, JOE ARPAIO, whose department arrested Kyle's brother KURT BUSCH for reckless driving last year in a much-publicized incident which led to Kurt Busch losing his last two 2005 races with Roush Racing. Earlier this week Sheriff Arpaio evidently turned the other cheek and made Kurt Busch a Special Deputy. But he called Kurt by his brother's name, Kyle. As for Kyle, he didn't know anything about the incident until questioned in a media conference.
The Busch race is Saturday afternoon and the Cup race is Sunday afternoon.