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Duel win gives Kurt Busch Daytona pole

Racing resumed on lap 43 with Jeff Gordon leading the field to the green flag, neatly managing to time his pull down in front of Trevor Bayne to reconnect the drafting arrangement for the final remaining laps. But it was not enough, and instead it was Edwards and Biffle who took control, battling to stay ahead of Burton/Bowyer - over the radio, Burton could be heard giving detailed heads-up information about his actions to Bowyer and the two were working beautifully together, seemingly biding their time before making a decisive move on the lead.

Further back, Kyle Busch had hooked up with Denny Hamlin but the pairing pushed that little bit too hard and Hamlin was sent into a spin trying to avoid going below the double-yellow boundary line, bringing out the fourth caution of the race on lap 46. Racing resumed on lap 49 with an urgent shuffling to resume draft pair formations, Carl Edwards coming out flying to maintain the top spot with Biffle, but Burton and Bowyer soon applying the pressure to run neck and next for the lead.

With six laps to go, a fifth and final caution came out for a wreck involving Todd Bodine and Steve Wallace - taking Bodine out of the running for a starting spot on Sunday, while Wallace was already locked-in thanks to a deal transferring him the owners' points from San Hornish Jr's 2010 campaign. The double-file restart put partners Burton and Bowyer alongside each other at the green flag and the duo had to time their move precisely to resume normal drafting formation without giving Edwards and Biffle the opportunity to slip past the clinch the lead again.

The move was perfection, and Jeff Burton and Clint Bowyer were able to open up an unassailable lead over the remanding the laps, Burton then just managing to see off a last minute surge from Bowyer to claim the second Duel victory in a photo-finish.

Further back a number of cars had a last lap wreck: and it was triggered by Jeff Gordon hitting the wall coming out of the final corner, which then caught up a number of cars following close behind that included his rookie drafting partner Trevor Bayne and Roush Fenway's David Ragan. Gordon's car will have to be repaired between now and Sunday or else like Earnhardt Jr. he runs the risk of being put to the back of the field for the start of the Daytona 500.

Full details of times for both Gatorade Duels are available in the results section.



Related Pictures

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Daytona International Speedway. [Pic Credit image.net]
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Kurt Busch, driver of the #41 Haas Automation Chevrolet SS, who is not in the Championship Four final phase of the Chase, qualified for 2nd position Friday, November 14, 2014 for Sunday`s final NASCAR Sprint Cup race of the season at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Homestead, Florida. He will be joined on the front row by Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Drive To End Hunger Chevrolet SS who won the Pole position. Photo by Garry Eller/HHP for Chevy Racing)
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