Kyle Busch wins pole at New Hampshire

Published on NewsOK Modified: July 11, 2014 at 6:01 pm •  Published: July 11, 2014
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LOUDON, N.H. (AP) — Kyle Busch went from upside down to top of the field.

Busch continued the season-long trend of track record qualifying speeds, turning a lap of 138.130 mph Friday to win the pole at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

It's the second pole of the season for Busch, who will be joined on the front row by reigning Sprint Cup champion Jimmie Johnson for Sunday's Sprint Cup race.

Denny Hamlin, Tony Stewart and Jamie McMurray completed the top five.

Points leader Jeff Gordon starts 11th. Daytona winner Aric Almirola starts 19th.

Busch starts first a week after he rolled over at Daytona. He was involved in a 25-car wreck that ended with Busch getting flipped upside-down in his No. 18 Toyota.

"I thought it was a little bit tight but I guess I was driving through it enough that it was still carrying good speed," Busch said. "Lap felt good. It didn't feel that good, but it felt good."

It was the 13th track record set this season.

"We knew the track record was going to fall, especially at one of the places where testing started," Johnson said. "I was very optimistic coming into qualifying today. I thought I had enough to get it there. Then I saw Kyle's lap. He definitely put one down."

Busch had a pair of runner-up finishes last season at New Hampshire. He has one career win at the track.

The 72-year-old Morgan Shepherd made the race when a 44th entry dropped out, putting him in the field. In the No. 33 Chevrolet, he'll extend his mark as the oldest driver to start a race in NASCAR's Sprint Cup series.

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