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NASCAR Loudon: Brad Keselowski beats Jimmie Johnson to pole

Brad KeselowskiNASCAR Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski beat his 2012 title rival Jimmie Johnson to pole position for Sunday's race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

Johnson, who holds a commanding lead in the current standings, was only on provisional pole for moments before next man out Keselowski's Penske Ford produced a 28.022-second lap to beat the Hendrick Chevrolet by 0.004 seconds.

Kurt Busch slipped his Furniture Row Chevy in between Hendrick pair Johnson and Dale Earnhardt Jr to take third, while his brother Kyle was fifth for Joe Gibbs after holding pole for a spell.

Juan Pablo Montoya was 11th but will fall to the rear of the field for the Loudon race as he had to switch to a back-up car following a practice crash.

On the day that it was announced he would be losing his Stewart-Haas seat to Kevin Harvick in 2014, Ryan Newman outqualified team boss Tony Stewart by 0.02s in 16th, with Harvick another two places back.

Morgan Shepherd is poised to break the record for the oldest driver to start a Cup race. The 71-year-old put Brian Keselowski's Toyota 42nd ahead of David Stremme, who crashed on his qualifying run.

Pos  Driver              Team/Car                     Time     Gap
 1.  Brad Keselowski     Penske Ford                  28.022s
 2.  Jimmie Johnson      Hendrick Chevrolet           28.026s  +0.004s
 3.  Kurt Busch          Furniture Row Chevrolet      28.040s  +0.018s
 4.  Dale Earnhardt Jr   Hendrick Chevrolet           28.050s  +0.028s
 5.  Kyle Busch          Joe Gibbs Toyota             28.056s  +0.034s
 6.  Jeff Gordon         Hendrick Chevrolet           28.104s  +0.082s
 7.  Carl Edwards        Roush Fenway Ford            28.112s  +0.090s
 8.  Denny Hamlin        Joe Gibbs Toyota             28.113s  +0.091s
 9.  Kasey Kahne         Hendrick Chevrolet           28.144s  +0.122s
10.  Jeff Burton         Childress Chevrolet          28.162s  +0.140s
11.  Juan Pablo Montoya  Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet  28.191s  +0.169s
12.  Jamie McMurray      Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet  28.198s  +0.176s
13.  Matt Kenseth        Joe Gibbs Toyota             28.212s  +0.190s
14.  Brian Vickers       Waltrip Toyota               28.218s  +0.196s
15.  Paul Menard         Childress Chevrolet          28.241s  +0.219s
16.  Ryan Newman         Stewart-Haas Chevrolet       28.245s  +0.223s
17.  Tony Stewart        Stewart-Haas Chevrolet       28.265s  +0.243s
18.  Aric Almirola       Petty Ford                   28.274s  +0.252s
19.  Kevin Harvick       Childress Chevrolet          28.320s  +0.298s
20.  Martin Truex Jr     Waltrip Toyota               28.337s  +0.315s
21.  Clint Bowyer        Waltrip Toyota               28.405s  +0.383s
22.  Marcos Ambrose      Petty Ford                   28.418s  +0.396s
23.  Greg Biffle         Roush Fenway Ford            28.458s  +0.436s
24.  Ricky Stenhouse Jr  Roush Fenway Ford            28.459s  +0.437s
25.  David Gilliland     Front Row Ford               28.462s  +0.440s
26.  Joey Logano         Penske Ford                  28.471s  +0.449s
27.  AJ Allmendinger     Phoenix Chevrolet            28.471s  +0.449s
28.  David Reutimann     BK Toyota                    28.501s  +0.479s
29.  Casey Mears         Germain Ford                 28.545s  +0.523s
30.  David Ragan         Front Row Ford               28.579s  +0.557s
31.  Michael McDowell    Parsons Ford                 28.639s  +0.617s
32.  Travis Kvapil       BK Toyota                    28.655s  +0.633s
33.  Danica Patrick      Stewart-Haas Chevrolet       28.658s  +0.636s
34.  Bobby Labonte       JTG Daugherty Toyota         28.698s  +0.676s
35.  Mike Bliss          Humphrey Smith Toyota        28.749s  +0.727s
36.  Josh Wise           Front Row Ford               28.854s  +0.832s
37.  Landon Cassill      Circle Sport Chevrolet       28.881s  +0.859s
38.  Ken Schrader        FAS Lane Ford                28.953s  +0.931s
39.  Joe Nemechek        NEMCO Toyota                 29.048s  +1.026s
40.  Dave Blaney         Baldwin Chevrolet            29.053s  +1.031s
41.  JJ Yeley            Baldwin Chevrolet            29.120s  +1.098s
42.  Morgan Shepherd     Keselowski Toyota            29.689s  +1.667s
43.  David Stremme       Swan Toyota
British GP competition
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