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Biffle sets new record to claim Charlotte pole

Greg Biffle was in record-setting form at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Thursday, as he claimed pole position for Saturday night's Bank of America 500.
As soon as his pit crew told him the lap time he'd just posted - 27.877s (193.708mph) on the 1.5-mile Charlotte Motor Speedway quad-oval - Greg Biffle was ecstatic.

"I was sitting in my motor home earlier watching the broadcast and I heard 'em say what the track record was," he said. "So I knew at that point it was a track record, so I was pretty excited about it. And I knew it was going to take a lot to beat it."

The previous lap record (27.948s, 193.216mph) had been set by Elliott Sadler in October 2005 and the top three men in qualifying on Thursday afternoon - Biffle, Mark Martin and Ryan Newman - all beat that benchmark. But it was Biffle who came out of it with pole.

"I was super excited about that lap because I drove it farther into Turn 1 than I thought would work," he said afterwards. "These cars won't go much faster than that, it was a perfect lap, and I hit all my marks just right on the button."

It's a much-needed boost for Biffle and for Roush Fenway Racing, which have struggled with the first four races of the 2012 Chase and now find themselves in danger of dropping out of the running altogether unless they can score some big successes.

"We've kind of been down in the dumps a little bit because we haven't started out this Chase as strong as we've been all season," Biffle admitted, saying that a packed schedule of testing and racing on six different race tracks in the last two weeks had helped get them back into shape. "We got home last night from Texas, learned a little bit. It helped us here, I think."

The ever-youthful veteran Mark Martin will join Biffle on the front row after missing out on the pole time by five hundredths of a second.

"Everything was dragging, scraping, making noises, smoking, and I smelled rubber, so I said: 'Man, we are rolling,'" said Martin. "I went down into turn 1, and I was just going so fast."

While Martin is not in the Chase this year after dropping back to a part-time involvement in the Cup series, his Michael Waltrip Racing team mates - Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex Jr. - both are, and qualified in fourth and sixth place respectively to line up right behind Martin for the green flag on Saturday night' for the start of the Bank of America 500.




Related Pictures

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The helmet of AJ Allmendinger, driver of the #51 Phoenix Construction Chevrolet, sits atop his car in the garage area during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Oct. 11 in Charlotte, N.C. (Photo Credit: John Harrelson/Getty Images)
Regan Smith, driver of the #88 AMP Energy/National Guard Chevrolet, is interviewed on the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on October 11, 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo Credit: Tyler Barrick/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Greg Biffle, driver of the #16 3M/IDG Ford, poses with the pole award after qualifying for pole position for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Bank of America 500 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on October 11, 2012 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo Credit: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images for NASCAR)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet, leads the field during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 22, 2015 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet SS finishes in sixth place and Paul Menard, driver of the #27 FVP/Menards Chevrolet SS finishes in fourth place Sunday, March 22, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Martin Truex, Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row/Visser Precision Chevrolet SS finishes in eighth place Sunday, March 22, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS finishes in third place and Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS finishes in second place Sunday, March 22, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet, climbs into his car prior to practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 21, 2015 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 Target Chevrolet SS qualifies for fifth position Friday, March 20, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Larson is 17th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS qualifies for 2nd position Friday, March 20, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Harvick leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. Joining him on the front row will be Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS who won the Pole position. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS celebrates with his team after winning the Pole position Friday, March 20, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Busch is 33rd in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. Joining him on the front row will be Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS won the Pole position Friday, March 20, 2015 in the NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Busch is 33rd in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. Joining him on the front row will be Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/Budweiser Chevrolet SS. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Martin Truex Jr., driver of the #78 Furniture Row / Visser Precision Chevrolet, stands in the garage area prior to practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2015 in Fontana, California. (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet, poses for a photo with Miss Coors Light Rachel Rupert after winning the pole during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Auto Club 400 at Auto Club Speedway on March 20, 2015 in Fontana, California.  (Photo Credit: Todd Warshaw/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brian Vickers, driver of the #55 Aaron`s Dream Machine Toyota, stands on the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series CampingWorld.com 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on March 13, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo Credit: Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)
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Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s/ Budweiser Chevrolet, looks on from the grid during qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series CampingWorld.com 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on March 13, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo Credit: Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Jamie McMurray, driver of the #1 CESSNA Chevrolet SS qualifies for third position Friday, March 13, 2015 for Sunday`s NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Phoenix International Speedway in Phoenix, Arizona. McMurray is 25th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/HHP for Chevy Racing)

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