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Kenseth sets Vegas mark in claiming pole

Kobalt Tools 400 Las Vegas Motor Speedway
Friday, March 04, 2011

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Matt Kenseth
Matt Kenseth sped around Las Vegas Motor Speedway in a track-record 28.589 seconds (188.884 mph) on Friday, Kenseth knocked fellow Ford driver Marcos Ambrose off the pole for the Kobalt Tools 400 Sprint Cup race at the 1.5-mile track.

The Coors Light pole award was the fifth of Kenseth's career and the first since May 2009 at Darlington. On Sunday, the 2003 Cup champion will try to break a winless string of 72 races that dates to Feb. 22, 2009, at Auto Club Speedway.

Kurt Busch, who qualified 22nd Friday, set the previous qualifying record of 188.719 mph last year.

Ambrose (188.166) will start beside Kenseth on the front row. Carl Edwards (188.127), last week's pole winner at Phoenix, was third and Roush Fenway Racing teammate Greg Biffle (187.970) fourth, as Fords claimed the top four starting positions for the third Cup race of the season.

Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Kyle Busch and Joey Logano are fifth and sixth on the grid, with A.J. Allmendinger, Ryan Newman, Martin Truex Jr. and Mark Martin completing the top 10.

David Ragan, whose No. 6 Ford was one of the fastest cars during practice, spun off Turn 2 on his qualifying lap and failed to post a time. He will start Sunday's race from the 42nd position.

Brian Keselowski failed to qualify for the 43-car field.

Lineup

POS CAR DRIVER MAKE SPONSOR SPEED TIME BEHIND
1 17 Matt Kenseth Ford Crown Royal 188.884 28.589 Leader
2 9 Marcos Ambrose Ford Stanley 188.166 28.698 -0.109
3 99 Carl Edwards Ford Scotts / Kellogg's 188.127 28.704 -0.115
4 16 Greg Biffle Ford 3M Post-it 187.970 28.728 -0.139
5 18 Kyle Busch Toyota Snickers Peanut Butter Squared 187.565 28.790 -0.201
6 20 Joey Logano Toyota The Home Depot 187.318 28.828 -0.239
7 43 A.J. Allmendinger Ford Best Buy 187.253 28.838 -0.249
8 39 Ryan Newman Chevrolet Haas Automation 187.221 28.843 -0.254
9 56 Martin Truex Jr. Toyota NAPA Auto Parts 187.201 28.846 -0.257
10 5 Mark Martin Chevrolet GoDaddy.com 187.195 28.847 -0.258
11 1 Jamie McMurray Chevrolet McDonald's 187.084 28.864 -0.275
12 78 Regan Smith Chevrolet Furniture Row Companies 187.084 28.864 -0.275
13 24 Jeff Gordon Chevrolet DuPont 186.903 28.892 -0.303
14 48 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet Lowe's / Kobalt Tools 186.728 28.919 -0.330
15 14 Tony Stewart Chevrolet Mobil 1 / Office Depot 186.529 28.950 -0.361
16 21 Trevor Bayne Ford Motorcraft / Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center 186.529 28.950 -0.361
17 11 Denny Hamlin Toyota FedEx Ground 186.464 28.960 -0.371
18 27 Paul Menard Chevrolet Moen / Menards 186.445 28.963 -0.374
19 83 Brian Vickers Toyota Red Bull 186.335 28.980 -0.391
20 2 Brad Keselowski Dodge Miller Lite 186.079 29.020 -0.431
21 31 Jeff Burton Chevrolet Caterpillar 186.053 29.024 -0.435
22 22 Kurt Busch Dodge Pennzoil Platinum 186.002 29.032 -0.443
23 42 Juan Montoya Chevrolet Clorox 185.970 29.037 -0.448
24 47 Bobby Labonte Toyota Kingsford 185.688 29.081 -0.492
25 00 David Reutimann Toyota Tums 185.567 29.100 -0.511
26 29 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet Budweiser 185.478 29.114 -0.525
27 13 Casey Mears Toyota GEICO 185.217 29.155 -0.566
28 33 Clint Bowyer Chevrolet Wheaties Fuel 185.103 29.173 -0.584
29 32 Mike Skinner Ford Southern Pride Trucking 184.742 29.230 -0.641
30 4 Kasey Kahne Toyota Red Bull 184.470 29.273 -0.684
31 87 Joe Nemechek Toyota NEMCO Motorsports 184.464 29.274 -0.685
32 46 J.J. Yeley Chevrolet Darlington Raceway.com 184.200 29.316 -0.727
33 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr. Chevrolet National Guard / Amp Energy 183.949 29.356 -0.767
34 36 Dave Blaney Chevrolet Accell Construction 183.014 29.506 -0.917
35 34 David Gilliland Ford Taco Bell 183.007 29.507 -0.918
36 60 Landon Cassill Toyota Big Red 182.070 29.659 -1.070
37 09 Bill Elliott Chevrolet Security Benefit / Rydex / Billboard.com 181.977 29.674 -1.085
38 7 Robby Gordon Dodge Speed Energy 181.403 29.768 -1.179
39 38 Travis Kvapil Ford Long John Silver's 181.269 29.790 -1.201
40 71 Andy Lally* Chevrolet Super Eco-Fuel Saver 179.414 30.098 -1.509
41 37 Tony Raines+ Ford Race Fuel Energy Drink 177.299 30.457 -1.868
42 6 David Ragan+ Ford UPS "We Love Logistics" - - -
43 66 Michael McDowell Toyota HP Racing LLC 181.769 29.708 -1.119
. . Did Not Qualify . . . . .
44 192 Brian Keselowski* Dodge MGM Grand 179.701 30.050 -1.461

+ Set by Owner Points
* Denotes Rookie

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