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Kyle takes pole while Kurt answers back

Kyle Busch claimed pole position for Sunday's road course race at Watkins Glen International, while his brother Kurt fended off questions from the press about his clash with Jimmie Johnson.
Kyle Busch isn't one of the NASCAR drivers you would immediately think of as a road course specialist (128mph on public roads notwithstanding) but he broke the track record at the historic Watkins Glen International former F1 venue with a time of 69.767s (126.421mph) on the 2.45 mile, 11-turn road course. It's Busch's eighth pole position in the Cup series, but surprisingly his first of 2011.

"It's cool to come out here and get a pole," said Busch said. "Joey got it in Sonoma, we got it here, so [Joe Gibbs Racing] swept the poles this year on the road courses. Hopefully we can get a win here Sunday."

While Joey Logano claimed a respectable 13th place at the Glen, JGR's other driver Denny Hamlin was less fortunate and hit the wall at turn 5, putting him at the back of the grid.

Despite feeling that he has "screwed up a little bit here, a little bit there" in his qualifying lap, Kyle's time was 0.210s ahead of AJ Allmendinger who will start alongside him on the front row for Sunday afternoon's 'Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips at the Glen' Cup race.

"I've always liked Watkins Glen a little bit more than Sonoma; I feel like I've struggled at Sonoma," admitted Allmendinger. "Watkins Glen is a race track that you've really got to be aggressive on and you can really kind of just hang the car out, and I feel I've always been pretty good here ... If we can build some momentum and get a good finish tomorrow, we're right there in points."

Behind them in third place is Allmendinger's team mate, road specialist Marcos Ambrose, who has one of the best records of any driver at the Glen with one second place and two third place finishes in Cup races and three wins in four starts in Nationwide. It represents the Tasmanian's best chance of getting through to the Chase if he can score his first-ever Cup series win here and make a run for one of the wildcard berths.

Ambrose would have preferred to have started even further forward: “I felt a little unfortunate really," he said. "We had a probably had the hardest part of the practice and I underdrove it just a little bit, but we're proud of our efforts. It would have been great to be on the front row with AJ."

Jimmie Johnson will start alongside Ambrose on the second row, with Juan Montoya and Ryan Newman right behind them in fifth and sixth. Former Glen winner Tony Stewart starts from seventh alongside Carl Edwards, while Kevin Harvick is back in 23rd and former F1 driver Scott Speed is starting from 29th.

After clinching the Nationwide Series race pole shortly before, Kurt Busch will be disappointed to only be starting from 27th on the grid. Earlier, during Saturday morning media appearances, Kurt had to tackle the withering verbal onslaught directed at him from Jimmie Johnson on Friday. He decided to take the high ground in the conflict.




Related Pictures

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Kurt Busch, driver of the #22 Discount Tire/Ruby Tuesday Dodge, poses after qualifying for the pole position in the NASCAR Nationwide Series Zippo 200 at Watkins Glen International on Aug. 13 in Watkins Glen, N.Y. Busch broke the track qualifying record with a fast lap of 123.241 mph (71.567 secs.) [Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images]
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M`s Toyota, poses in Victory Lane after qualifying for the pole position in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips at the Glen at Watkins Glen International on Aug. 13 in Watkins Glen, N.Y. Busch broke the track qualifying record with a fast lap of 126.421 mph (69.767 secs.) [Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/Getty Images]
Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 Interstate Batteries Toyota, and Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 National Guard Chevrolet, lead a group of cars during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida.  (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Patriotic Chevrolet, climbs from his car after being involved in an on track incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet, is involved in an incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 6, 2014 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe’s Patriotic Chevrolet SS, qualified fifth Friday, July 4, 2014 for Saturday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida. Johnson is 2nd in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, and Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, lead the field at the start of the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts at Kentucky Speedway on June 28, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky.  (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #54 Monster Energy Toyota, and Kevin Harvick, driver of the #5 Kroger/P&G Chevrolet, lead the field on a late restart during the NASCAR Nationwide Series John R. Elliott HERO Campaign 300 at Kentucky Speedway on June 27, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet, left, talks with Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive to End Hunger Chevrolet, in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quaker State 400 presented by Advance Auto Parts at Kentucky Speedway on June 27, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky.  (Photo Credit: Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, leads a pack of trucks during the NASCAR Camping World Series UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway on June 26, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Camping World Series UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway on June 26, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, crosses the finish line to win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway on June 26, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky. (Photo Credit: Robert Laberge/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 225 at Kentucky Speedway on June 26, 2014 in Sparta, Kentucky.  (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brian Vickers, driver of the #55 Aaron`s Dream Machine Toyota, slides his car after contact with Joey Logano, driver of the #22 Shell-Pennzoil Ford, during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway on June 22, 2014 in Sonoma, California. (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet SS, qualified third Saturday, June 21, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Sonoma Raceway in Sanoma, California. Larson is 8th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
AJ Allmendinger, driver of the #47 Kingsford/Clorox Chevrolet SS, qualified second Saturday, June 21, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Sonoma Raceway in Sanoma, California. He will be sharing the front row with pole winner, Chevy`s Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 Cessna Chevrolet SS. Allmendinger is 21st in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Christa L. Thomas/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 Cessna Chevrolet SS, won the pole position Saturday, June 21, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Sonoma Raceway in Sanoma, California. McMurray posted a track record with a time of 74.354 seconds (96.350 mph). Next to him on the front row will be Chevy`s AJ Allmendinger, driver of the #47 Kingsford/Clorox Chevrolet SS. McMurray is 20th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 Cessna Chevrolet SS, won the pole position Saturday, June 21, 2014 for Sunday`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Sonoma Raceway in Sanoma, California. McMurray posted a track record with a time of 74.354 seconds (96.350 mph). Next to him on the front row will be Chevy`s AJ Allmendinger, driver of the #47 Kingsford/Clorox Chevrolet SS. McMurray is 20th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)

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