Kevin Harvick blew them away in qualifying with the fastest pole speed NASCAR has seen since 1987.
Kevin Harvick has snagged pole position at Michigan; his first pole here. It's also his ninth time qualifying P1, and the third time he's done in 2014. That's a single-season record for him. Fellow Chevrolet driver Jeff Gordon to start alongside in second. Drivers were topping 215mph into turn one during the session. A complete recap of qualifying can be seen below.
Austin Dillon was the first to post a time during the flurry of activity at the start of qualifying. At the end of the session, Allgaier saved himself from elimination in the final seconds, but he knocked Ryan Newman out in the process. Newman quickly responded with a solid team, thus pushing Allmendinger out. Joey Logano was the final driver to advance.
Notables knocked out - A.J Allemdinger (25th), Tony Stewart (26th), Danica Patrick (27th), Juan Pablo Montoya (28th), Denny Hamlin (29th), and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (30th).
David Stremme was the final driver to make the field with BK Racing's Ryan Truex being the only DNQ. Kevin Harvick broke the track record set last August with a lap time of 25.295 seconds; a stunning 203.995mph lap.
Kyle Busch, Kasey Kahne, and Clint Bowyer all lost a foothold in the final twelve after last-second charges by Kyle Larson, Jamie McMurray, and Brian Vickers. Notables Matt Kenseth and Carl Edwards qualified a surprising 21st and 22nd.
Final 12 drivers advancing - Kevin Harvick, Brad Keselowski, Jamie McMurray, Brian Vickers, Paul Menard, Jeff Gordon, Joey Logano, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Jimmie Johnson, Kurt Busch Kyle Larson, & Aric Almirola
Jimmie Johnson was the first to put down a time in the final round, but his stay at the top was short-lived. Kevin Harvick threw down an astonishing lap of 204.557mph (35.198 seconds). That is the fastest NASCAR Sprint Cup pole speed since 1987. This is also the first time under this new format a driver has gone fastest in all three rounds.
“Obviously, it was a really fast lap, and the car has been really good since we rolled it off the truck," said Harvick. "These guys put fast cars on the track each week, and we have been in contention for poles and wins. Today it all came together. I am really proud of everyone at the Hendrick (Motorsports) engine shop. At these big race tracks when you have fast cars, speed makes the driver’s job much easier.”
Top ten qualifiers - Kevin Harvick, Jeff Gordon, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Aric Almirola, Paul Menard, Brad Keselowski, Jimmie Johnson, Kurt Busch, Joey Logano, and Brian Vickers.