Busch wins 2nd pole of season
By Noah Trister
The Associated Press
BROOKLYN, Mich. — Kurt Busch’s impressive qualifying run highlighted a strong day for Ford in Michigan.
Busch won his second NASCAR Cup Series pole of the season Friday at Michigan International Speedway, posting a lap of 203.361 mph in his No. 41 Ford. It was the 24th pole of his career, and Ford ended up with six of the top seven spots in qualifying.
“Right now, Ford has definitely got all eight cylinders clicking hard,” Busch said. “So then it’s up to me.”
Brad Keselowski was second in qualifying, followed by Kyle Busch and Kevin Harvick. Kyle Busch and Harvick are 1-2 in the points standings and have won nine of the 14 races in the series this year.
Kyle Busch’s Toyota was the only non-Ford car in the top seven.
Kurt Busch also started first in Texas in April and finished seventh in the race. He hasn’t won this season but has seven top-10 finishes.
“It’s awesome to get the pole today. I wanted it bad. We went for it, made the right air pressure adjustment,” he said. “I love the fact that the track had the grip level it did today, the overcast gave me the confidence to go for it hard.”
Kurt Busch was ninth in the first round of qualifying and fourth in the second round. Then he came up with the fastest lap of the day.
Kyle Larson, who has won the last three Cup races at Michigan, was 26th in qualifying. Larson is winless on the season, and this is his lowest starting position since he started 38th in the Daytona 500.
“Our car has just been pretty far off, I feel like, all day. It’s really tight. I don’t feel like I can turn the wheel very far either,” Larson said. “I don’t know why that is. But, we’ve got some smart people in our race trailer and on our race team that will get it worked out. We’ll get some laps tomorrow and hopefully be better.”
Martin Truex Jr. was 17th in qualifying after winning last weekend at Pocono. He’s tied with Kyle Busch for the series lead with three poles this year.
The history of it
Kurt Busch won the pole for the third time in 35 Cup races at MIS. He finished third in 2010 and 11th in 2011.
Harvick topped the first two qualifying sessions and is set to start in the top 10 for the 13th time this season.