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Press Snoop: Newly wed on pole.

JEFF GORDON/#24 Dupont Chevrolet got his first wedding present from NASCAR Friday afternoon at Phoenix International Raceway by getting the pole position for the NASCAR Nextel Cup Checker Auto Parts 500 race at Phoenix International Raceway, with a time of 26.773/134.464 mph. This is Gordon's fifty-sixth Cup pole position.

The current PIR Cup Qualifying track record of 26.499/135.854 mph set by RYAN NEWMAN in November 2004 still holds.

Gordon has been on pole at PIR but never won here...yet. The newly wed four time NASCAR Cup Champion said "It's all about winning for us, whether it's the race or the Championship." It's been a great week, I can tell you that. Life is good."

Gordon announced his engagement at the June Cup at Infineon Raceway and went on to win that race. He's hoping such a precedent will be repeated this weekend.

The top five qualifiers were running Chevrolet Monte Carlos: Gordon, KEVIN HARVICK/#29 Reese's Chevrolet, BRIAN VICKERS/#25 GMAC Chevrolet; DALE EARNHARDT Jr/#8 Budweiser Chevrolet; and JOE NEMECHEK/#01 Principal Financial Chevrolet.

BOBBY LABONTE/#43 Cheerios/Betty Crocker Dodge crashed during Qualifying, but was checked and released from the Infield Care Center. He qualified fifteenth, but now will run his backup car, falling to the back of the pack for the start of the race.

There were 51 drivers attempting to make the 312-lap race scheduled for 1:30 pm Sunday. Those who didn't make the show were: JASON LEFFLER/#71 Ft. McDowell Resort Chevrolet; TODD KLUEVER/#06 3M Ford; MORGAN SHEPHERD/#89 Victory in Jesus Racing Dodge; BRANDON ASH/#01 Sprinter Trucking Dodge; KEVIN LEPAGE/#34 Oak Gloves Chevrolet; KENNY WALLACE/#78 Furniture Row Chevrolet; DERRIKE COPE/#74 Sundance Vacations Dodge; and JEREMY MAYFIELD/#09 Miccosukee Resort Dodge.

Harvick was asked about last weekend's 'incident' after the Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway, when he and his wife DELANA and NASCAR official JOHN SACCO were shoved by a crew member of SCOTT RIGGS/#10 Valvoline Dodge team. Tuesday after the race NASCAR penalized CRAIG CURIONE for his actions in the incident. Curione has been suspended indefinitely and fined $10,000.

Harvick, when asked if he was pleased the way the situation was handled, said "Absolutely. It was handled as professionally as it could have been. Emotions run high after a race when things don't go your way. But they don't need to be handled that way. But everyone is all right and we'll just go on. By the time I got to work Monday, Ray (team owner RAY EVERNHAM) had called three times.

In 1995 Harvick was the Rookie of the Year in the NASCAR Southwest Tour Series, and he went on to win the NASCAR Winston West Championship in 1998. Thursday night at PIR the last ever SWT race was won by J.R. NORRIS/#5 Victor Ford. Harvick was asked how he felt about it and why he didn't run in the race. He didn't answer why, but said "It's something I grew up racing with. I watched Carelli and Hornaday race for a long time. RICK CARELLI is a past champion in both SWT and Winston West, and is currently the General Manager for Kevin Harvick Incorporated. RON HORNADAY is a two-time champion in both the Craftsman Truck Series and SWT, and a current Truck competitor.



Related Pictures

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Jeff Gordon,driver of the #24 DuPont Chevrolet Monte Carlo, wins the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series Gatorade Duel 2 qualifying race at Daytona International Speedway, Daytona Beach,FL-2/16/06. ©Dorsey Patrick  (usa)
Chase Elliott, driver of the #24 NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet SS, stops in his pit on his way to a fifth place finish Saturday night, April 9, 2016 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Texas. Elliott takes over the #24 car from retired driver Jeff Gordon.  (Photo by Ashley R Dickerson for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2016 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s / Superman Chevrolet, pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2016 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s / Superman Chevrolet, takes the chequered flag to win the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2016 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Austin Dillon, driver of the #3 American Ethanol Chevrolet, practices for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 18, 2016 in Fontana, California.  (Photo Credit: Jeff Gross/Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet, leads Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Folds of Honor QuikTrip 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway on February 28, 2016 in Hampton, Georgia. (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
Chase Elliott, rookie driver of the #24 NAPA Auto Parts Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet SS captures the pole Sunday, February 14, 2016 during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Elliott, who takes over the #24 car from retired driver Jeff Gordon, is the youngest driver ever to win the pole. He will lead the pack at the start of the February 21 race. (Photo by HHP/ Rusty Jarrett for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet, leads a pack of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Sprint Unlimited at Daytona International Speedway on February 13, 2016 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s Chevrolet SS, holds his daughter, Lydia Sunday, November 22, 2015 before final race of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Johnson and other Jeff Gordon teammates at Hendrick Motorsports wore tribute hats to honor the retiring Chevy driver prior to the start of the race. (Photo by Alan Marler/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, races to a sixth place finish Sunday, November 22, 2015 in the final race of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. Gordon finishes third in the Chase for the Cup Championship. This was Gordon`s last race as a NASCAR Sprint Cup driver. He has made 796 consecutive Cup Series starts, earned 93 wins, and 81 poles - all behind the wheel of Chevrolets. (Photo by Andrew Coppley/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Defending Sprint Cup Champion Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Budweiser/Jimmy John’s Chevrolet SS, races to a second place finish, Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS finishes in sixth place, and Martin Truex, Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision finishes in twelfth place Sunday, November 22, 2015 in the final race of the 2015 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. This Chevrolet drivers finished 2nd, 3rd and 4th (respectively) in the Chase of the Cup Championship. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
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)
Former racing driver Mario Andretti, Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 AXALTA Chevrolet, and Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton pose during 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: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 AXALTA Chevrolet, pits during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ford EcoBoost 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 22, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/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 Larson, driver of the #42 Crest Chevrolet, celebrates with the trophy in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR XFINITY Series Ford EcoBoost 300 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 21, 2015 in Homestead, Florida (Photo Credit: Jeff Curry/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Matt Crafton, driver of the #88 Ideal Door/Menards Toyota, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Ford EcoBoost 200 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on November 20, 2015 in Homestead, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jeff Curry/Getty Images)

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