BUSCH: Hamilton Jr nabs pole in Chicago

Bobby Hamilton Jr speeds to the Bud Pole at Chicagoland in the NASCAR Busch series qualifying for Saturday's race. The Team Rensi Motorsports Ford driver broke the track record with a fast lap at 29.410 with a one-lap speed of 183.611 miles per...

Bobby Hamilton Jr speeds to the Bud Pole at Chicagoland in the NASCAR Busch series qualifying for Saturday's race. The Team Rensi Motorsports Ford driver broke the track record with a fast lap at 29.410 with a one-lap speed of 183.611 miles per hour.

"This morning, the Ford was extremely fast," commented Hamilton after his record-setting lap. "It ran wherever I wanted during practice so I felt confident for the qualifying attempt."

Hamilton's confidence gave the team the pole by 0.240-seconds over Kyle Busch for his first pole this season.

The Busch drivers had to split the qualifying attempts when a sudden Midwestern storm arrived drenching the track. The two-hour delay left the track green.

Rookie Busch slotted second and will start on the front row in his Hendrick Motorsports' Chevy. "We tried, but were unable to match Hamilton's time. I don't think anyone will be able to," said Busch after his attempt.

Joe Nemechek, Matt Kenseth and Kevin Harvick round out the top five.

In an ironic twist during qualifying, both of the Tropicana (race sponsor) orange inflatable balloons became loose and floated onto the oval, one landed right in the path of Todd Szegedy as he was exited the fourth turn.

Szegedy managed to miss the orange ball without incident in his Chevy and pulled off. His attempt was allowed after the rain delay; he qualified 12th. "I used to like orange juice," quipped Szegedy.

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Series NASCAR XFINITY
Drivers Bobby Hamilton , Matt Kenseth , Kevin Harvick , Joe Nemechek , Todd Szegedy