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Keselowski on pole at the Monster Mile

Brad Keselowski won pole position for Sunday afternoon's FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks at Dover's "Monster Mile".
Brad Keselowski won his fifth pole in 174 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races after posting a lap of 21.892s (164.444mph) at the one-mile Dover International Speedway in qualifying on Friday afternoon.

It's Keselowski's second pole and tenth top ten start this year, and his first-ever Cup pole in nine races at Dover International Speedway.

"They gave me a great car here with the Miller Lite Ford Fusion," Keselowski admitted. "I didn't feel like I got it all the first run. I like this group qualifying and I got another shot at it.

"I think we have been pretty decent and there are a lot of great cars in race trim. The #18 looked good and the #4 has been strong and we have a lot to go. There is a lot left in the weekend. We have practice tomorrow and we just have to keep working."

Kyle Busch had earlier topped the first elimination round of qualifying as well as the earlier practice session, but in the end he was unable to quite replicate the form in the second and final stage of qualifying, falling short of Keselowski by 0.088s.

"The #2 and #22 always seem to go faster on their second runs and we just got beat by speed there," said Busch. "Our car was really fast in practice and really liked it there but just wasn't able to quite get the speed we wanted there in qualifying. I don't think anybody really did. I think everybody kind of slowed down. Overall we slowed down a little more than most I guess. I don't know. But, just didn't quite get enough there that last run and come up short."

That puts Busch on the front row for Sunday afternoon's FedEx 400 benefiting Autism Speaks race, just ahead of Keselowski's Penske team mate Joey Logano who was third-fastest and who will now head the second row of the grid just ahead of last week's race winner Jimmie Johnson.

"All I heard was Kyle say he came up a little short and I guess I am the same thing, just a little shorter," said Logano. "We picked up a lot of speed from where we were in practice. Our Shell Pennzoil Ford wasn't very good and didn't have a bunch of speed but we made good adjustments to get faster there. We just over adjusted a little from the first run to the second run on trying to free it up and we just couldn't give it the gas as aggressive as I needed to."

"Good lap, [but] did have a moment off of 4," reported Johnson of his own effort. "Certainly dragged some speed out of the car with that. I think we could have been a little bit better. I'm not sure where it would have put us, but a strong day. We unloaded fast and we made it through each round and had a lot of speed in the car. I'm excited about the weekend."

Kyle Larson is the highest-placed rookie on the grid in fifth position, putting him alongside Johnson's Hendrick Motorsport team mate Jeff Gordon who was playing down the problems he experienced with back spasms last week at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

"I wouldn't say I'm 100 percent," said Gordon. "I'm back closer to normal, which is just always aggravation and some discomfort. I'm still feeling some of the affects of what went on last week, but I felt good in the car. I didn't have any sharp pains, so that's good.

"I just had a week of rest and normal activity. Lots of ice this week," he continued. "I was pretty sore on Monday and Tuesday after that long 600, but that's not totally unusual; but probably just a little bit more than normal because of all that I went through. So, I feel good for this weekend."

Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Brian Vickers, Clint Bowyer, AJ Allmendinger and Greg Biffle all made it into the top 12 shootout, while Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Ryan Newman just missed out and will therefore start from row seven on Sunday.

The Cup drivers all get two more practice sessions on Saturday to dial in their cars for the race. Dover is also hosting Nationwide and Camping World Truck Series races this weekend.

Full Sprint Cup qualifying results



Related Pictures

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Brad Keselowski, driver of the #2 Miller Lite Ford, climbs out of his car after qualifying for the pole position in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Camping World RV Sales 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway on July 12, 2013 in Loudon, New Hampshire. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski celebrates pole position at Dover International Speedway (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Kyle Larson, driver of the #42 ENEOS Chevrolet, is involved in an incident during the NASCAR Nationwide Series Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/Getty Images)
Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, qualified for seventh position Friday, August 22, 2014 for Saturday evening`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. Busch is 23rd in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jimmie Johnson, driver of the #48 Lowe`s Chevrolet SS, qualified for sixth position Friday, August 22, 2014 for Saturday evening`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. Johnson is seventh in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet SS, qualified for second position Friday, August 22, 2014 for Saturday evening`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. Gordon leads the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmie John`s Chevrolet SS, won the pole position Friday, August 22, 2014 for Saturday evening`s Nascar Sprint Cup race at Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, Tennessee. Harvick is sixth in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) standings. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, poses with the pole award after qualifying fastest for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/Getty Images)
Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy John`s Chevrolet, poses with his wife DeLana, son Keelan, and the pole award after qualifying fastest for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Irwin Tools Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 22, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, celebrates in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, poses with the trophy in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, celebrates with a burnout after winning the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Brad Keselowski, driver of the #19 DrawTire Ford, leads Kyle Busch, driver of the #51 Dollar General Toyota, and the rest of the field during the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series UNOH 200 presented by ZLOOP at Bristol Motor Speedway on August 21, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo Credit: Patrick Smith/NASCAR via Getty Images)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, races to win Sunday, August 17, 2014 in the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. Kevin Harvick, driver of the #4 Jimmy Johns Chevrolet SS finished second. This was Gordon`s third win of the season. (Photo by Alan Marler/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, celebrates with a burnout after winning the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sunday, August 17, 2014 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. This was Gordon`s third win of the season. (Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
With General Motors CEO Mary Barra, Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, holds the Michigan Heritage Trophy after winning the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sunday, August 17, 2014 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. This was Gordon`s third win of the season. In 2013, MIS began awarding the Michigan Heritage Trophy as a recognition and celebration of the automobile and it`s importance to the race track and the manufacturers competing in NASCAR. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet SS, celebrates with his crew after winning the Pure Michigan 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sunday, August 17, 2014 at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan. This was Gordon`s third win of the season. (Photo by Harold Hinson/HHP for Chevy Racing)
Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Axalta Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway on August 17, 2014 in Brooklyn, Michigan.  (Photo Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images)

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