The Busch brothers are looking forward to keeping the magic alive at Pocono. Kyle and Kurt Busch have both been on tremendous hot streaks lately and both scored top five starting positions for Sunday's Gillette ProGlide 500 at Pocono Raceway.
Kyle Busch claimed the pole in today's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series qualifying when he turned a fast lap of 169.485 miles per hour in qualifying here on Friday while Kurt Busch will start fourth after turning a fast lap of 168.963 mph, a little more than 1/10th of a second off his younger brother's time around the unique 2.5 mile tri-oval circuit.
"The car was really fast," said Busch, who nailed his second pole of the year. He won at Richmond from the pole a month ago. "I'm really proud of the guys that worked hard to make some changes during practice to try to get the car to my liking a little more. We made some good changes there to qualifying trim that really helped us and we'll keep in there for tomorrow and see if we can't make them work in race trim too."
The pole winner said that the track cooled down a little before his qualifying effort and he believes that helped him claim the pole for his 200th career start.
"I felt good seeing the cloud cover come out just before we went out there," said Kyle Busch, who has seven straight top-10 finishes coming into Pocono, including a third place run at Charlotte last week. "I knew the track was probably going to pick up some grip and I really thought we needed to charge and take advantage of that opportunity. I had to give it all she had and we made a good lap there."
Kyle Busch only has two top-10 finishes in 10 races here and hasn't had a top-10 since finishing eighth in 2007.
Kurt Busch is coming off a pair of wins at Charlotte, including the All-Star race there two weeks ago. He also finished third at Darlington and has four top-10 finishes in the past six points races.
Earlier in the day, he said that he likes this stretch of summer races following Charlotte.
"Pocono has always been a good track for me and I enjoy coming up this way," said Kurt Busch, who won here in 2005 and again in 2007. "It's just a fun part of our season on how it kicks off the summer stretch."
Clint Bowyer was a 1/10th of a second off of Busch's time and qualified second - his best qualifying run of the season.
"It was a good run," Bowyer said. "We went out practice and it was really fast in race trim right off the bat. It kind of caught us off guard. You always come to the track with your best stuff and aim to be the fastest car and we were by quite a bit. We switched over to qualifying trim thinking it might be our best shot at sitting on a pole. But in qualifying trim we were slower than we were in race trim."
Dale Earnhardt Jr. qualified third, his best qualifying effort since winning the pole at Atlanta in March.
He is looking to shake out of a five race slide without a top-10 finish.
"We've had a terrible month," Earnhardt said. "I have qualified well here in the past and we had another good day. We ran our race trim (in practice) and I still see where we're missing some things and we need to gain a little bit tomorrow. Hopefully we get some time on the track. We didn't prove anything with our race trim but for ourselves, it helps our confidence a little bit."
Denny Hamlin rounded out the top five while point's leader Kevin Harvick qualified 22nd.
Terry Cook and Ted Musgrave failed to qualify.