BUSCH: Bliss, Green capture poles at Homestead

MIAMI, Fla., (Nov. 14, 2002) - Mike Bliss and Jeff Green were the Bud Pole winners in the first day of activity on Thursday for the Ford Championship Weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Bliss, driver of the No. 16 IWX Motor Freight Chevrolet,...

MIAMI, Fla., (Nov. 14, 2002) - Mike Bliss and Jeff Green were the Bud Pole winners in the first day of activity on Thursday for the Ford Championship Weekend at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Bliss, driver of the No. 16 IWX Motor Freight Chevrolet, turned a lap of 147.111 mph around the 1.5-mile South Florida facility to capture the pole for Friday's Ford 200 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series season finale.

The Milwaukie, Ore., native enters the Ford 200 with a 32-point advantage on second place driver Rick Crawford and 71-point lead on third-place driver Ted Musgrave.

"This is a good start for the weekend," Bliss said. "We just need to finish the weekend like this."

Rounding out the top five in qualifying for the Ford 200 were Musgrave (146.991), Jason Leffler (146.171), Rick Crawford (145.447) and Ron Hornaday (145.368).

The top Raybestos Rookie of the Year qualifier was Bill Lester, who qualified ninth in the No. 8 Dodge Motorsports Dodge with a speed of 144.208. It's the 12th time this year that Lester has been the top rookie in qualifying.

In Bud Pole Qualifying for Saturday's Ford 300 NASCAR Busch Series finale, Jeff Green put the No. 21 Rockwell Automation Chevrolet on the pole in record fashion with a speed of 152.031 mph.

Green's fast lap snapped the NASCAR Busch Series track record for Homestead-Miami Speedway. The old record was 151.490 mph established by Bobby Hamilton Jr. in 2000.

"Our lap, I don't think I could've done any better or anything different," Green said. "We really worked hard on our race and really wasn't happy with it. We just kind of threw some stuff at it and made a few changes in between practice and qualifying. The late draw really helped me and the guys that went at the end."

Rounding the top-five qualifying for Saturday's Ford 300 NASCAR Busch Series was Raybestos Rookie candidate Brian Vickers (151.882), Hamilton (151.882), Mears (151.532) and Joe Nemechek (151.193).

Tickets for the Ford Championship Weekend are available by calling the Homestead-Miami Speedway ticket office at (305) 230-RACE.

-hms-

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Series NASCAR-NS , NASCAR-TRUCK