Rain puts Kyle Busch on Glen pole
|By Diego Mejia||Friday, August 8th 2008, 21:44 GMT|
Rain has once again hampered proceedings in the Sprint Cup series forcing officials to cancel both the practice and qualifying on Friday, meaning Kyle Busch will start from pole on Sunday's Centurion Boats at the Glen.
Practice was scheduled to start shortly before noon but just as the cars were lining up at the end of pit road, rain forced officials to keep the red flag waving. As drizzle persisted later, the 95-minute session was cancelled.
Given that there was no practice at all, officials decided to cancel the qualifying, also because there was not enough time before the start of the support Grand-Am race to go ahead with the Sprint Cup qualifying procedure and a scheduled Nationwide series practice.
The starting grid for Sunday's race will thus be determined according to the owner standings, led by the No. 18 car of driver point's leader Kyle Busch, who will share the front row of the grid with Dale Earnhardt Jr.
"Right now it's the same for everybody on the Cup side as nobody has gotten on the track, so hopefully we'll be able to work on our cars tomorrow and make them better," said Busch, who starts from pole for the fifth time this season, the third he has been handed the top spot due to rain.
"Obviously having a good starting position really helps in being able to get up front. I kind of struggled with qualifying at Sonoma and we ended up 30th. Here this weekend starting up front should pay dividends. Hopefully we can have a fast enough race car to keep it up there and lead it out until the end."
Busch has won the two road-course events he has entered this season, first winning at Mexico City in the Nationwide series and then taking a commanding victory at Infineon Raceway in the Sprint Cup series. This weekend he could become the first driver in NASCAR history to win three three road-course races in the same year.
Carl Edwards, Jimmie Johnson and Jeff Burton will complete the top five on the grid followed by four-time race-winner Jeff Gordon, while pre-race favourite Tony Stewart will line up ninth beside JGR teammate Denny Hamlin.
Australian Marcos Ambrose picked up the 43rd and last spot on the grid in the No. 21 Wood Brothers Ford, while road-course specialists Brian Simo and Boris Said were sadly denied a chance to compete on Sunday.
Pos Driver Make 1. Kyle Busch Toyota 2. Dale Earnhardt Jr Chevrolet 3. Carl Edwards Ford 4. Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet 5. Jeff Burton Chevrolet 6. Jeff Gordon Chevrolet 7. Kasey Kahne Dodge 8. Greg Biffle Ford 9. Tony Stewart Toyota 10. Denny Hamlin Toyota 11. Kevin Harvick Chevrolet 12. Clint Bowyer Chevrolet 13. Matt Kenseth Ford 14. David Ragan Ford 15. Aric Almirola Chevrolet 16. Ryan Newman Dodge 17. Brian Vickers Toyota 18. Martin Truex Jr Chevrolet 19. Kurt Busch Dodge 20. Jamie McMurray Ford 21. Bobby Labonte Dodge 22. Elliott Sadler Dodge 23. Travis Kvapil Ford 24. Casey Mears Chevrolet 25. Juan Montoya Dodge 26. David Gilliland Ford 27. Paul Menard Chevrolet 28. David Reutimann Toyota 29. Dave Blaney Toyota 30. Reed Sorenson Dodge 31. Robby Gordon Dodge 32. Ron Fellows Chevrolet 33. Michael Waltrip Toyota 34. Sam Hornish Jr Dodge 35. Scott Riggs Chevrolet 36. Michael McDowell Toyota 37. AJ Allmendinger Toyota 38. PJ Jones Toyota 39. Patrick Carpentier Dodge 40. Kyle Petty Dodge 41. Joe Nemechek Chevrolet 42. Max Papis Chevrolet 43. Marcos Ambrose Ford