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Kyle Busch cops Nationwide Coors Light Pole Award

August 22, 2014, Staff report,

Seven-time Bristol winner secures No. 1 starting spot for Food City 300

RELATED: Coors Light Pole Qualifying results

Kyle Busch secured the Coors Light Pole Award in Friday afternoon qualifying for the NASCAR Nationwide Series at Bristol Motor Speedway.

Busch, driving the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 54 Toyota, registered a lap of 125.142 mph in the second and final segment of knockout-style qualifying. The seven-time Bristol winner in the Nationwide Series carries a three-race victory streak into Friday night's Food City 300 (7:30 p.m. ET, ESPN).


"That's pretty quick around this place in a Nationwide car," Busch said after his fifth Nationwide pole of the season and the 41st of his career. "Can't say enough -- awesome race car here."

Ryan Blaney qualified second, just missing out on his second career Nationwide pole position by .099 seconds in the Team Penske No. 22 Ford. Kyle Larson, who topped Thursday's final practice, was third-fastest with rookie points leader Chase Elliott and Elliott Sadler completing the top five on the .533-mile concrete track.

Busch topped both the opening 30-minute session and the final 10-minute portion of multicar qualifying. Both segments were eventful.

Brendan Gaughan made slight contact with the wall through Turns 3 and 4 at the 6 1/2-minute mark of the 10-minute final session. He returned to make a last-ditch effort but was only 11th-fastest out of the 12 drivers in the final round.

Just past the nine-minute mark in the opening round, Carl Long's No. 13 Chevrolet slipped sideways off Turn 4 and collected the rear end of the No. 19 Toyota driven by Hermie Sadler, who will make his first Nationwide Series start since 2010 in Friday night's 300-lapper.

Landon Cassill and Dylan Kwasniewski each had scrapes with the outside wall during the first of two rounds of qualifying, causing light right-side damage to their cars. Both continued on, but neither driver was within the top 12 who advanced to the final round.

Kevin Harvick, a two-time Nationwide winner this season with five career Bristol victories in the series, was 13th-fastest in the opening 30-minute round and the first driver to miss the final qualifying cut.

Milka Duno, bidding to become the first Hispanic woman to compete in a NASCAR national series event, failed to qualify for the 40-car field after clocking the slowest speed among the 45 drivers entered. Long, Matt Frahm, Ryan Ellis and Derrike Cope were the other drivers who failed to qualify.


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