Race Weekend Central

Matt Kenseth, Joe Gibbs Racing Dominate 2015 Pure Michigan 400 Qualifying

If Friday’s qualifying session at Michigan International Speedway was any indication, Joe Gibbs Racing is the team to beat.

Matt Kenseth put down a scorching 36.458-second lap to claim the Coors Light Pole Award for Sunday’s Pure Michigan 400 at Michigan International Speedway.

“Jason (Ratcliff, crew chief) and these guys did a great job with out Dollar General Camry,” said Kenseth. “We definitely didn’t have the speed in practice and they made some great changes for qualifying there and got a couple good laps.

I messed up turn four a bit on that last lap, but we just had such incredible speed the rest of the lap that we were able to overcome that and get it.”

Kenseth’s 197.448-mph circuit put him just ahead of teammates Denny Hamlin (36.550) and Carl Edwards (36.683), who ended the session in second and third.

“It almost seems like an F1-type race out there in qualifying, and our organization is really making strides,” said Hamlin of JGR. “I think that it almost becomes a challenge within yourself to not be the last within your organization.”

Kyle Busch was forced to settle for sixth on the charts with a 36.838-second lap, just missing a chance to give JGR the top four starting positions at the Brooklyn, Michigan circuit.

“In the final round there, it was just a matter of not screwing up or it could have been all top-four,” said Busch. “I just got too tight there and didn’t hit the lap perfect and we ended up sixth.”

Austin Dillon (36.750) and Tony Stewart (36.833) split the JGR teammates in fourth and fifth, continuing a string of good qualifying performances for both drivers.

Busch, Kevin Harvick, Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Joey Logano rounded out the top 10.

The qualifying session was held with single-car runs due to the high-drag rules package the teams are competing with this weekend.

The stars of the Cup Series will return to MIS on Saturday for practice at 8:30 a.m. ET.


120Matt KensethToyotaDollar General197.48836.458Leader
211Denny HamlinToyotaFedEx Freight196.9936.550.092
319Carl EdwardsToyotaArris196.27636.6830.225
43Austin DillonChevroletDow195.91836.750.292
514Tony StewartChevroletMobil 1 / Bass Pro Shops195.47736.8330.375
618Kyle BuschToyotaInterstate Batteries195.4536.8380.38
74Kevin HarvickChevroletJimmy John's/ Budweiser195.24936.8760.418
848Jimmie JohnsonChevroletLOWES195.22836.880.422
988Dale Earnhardt JrChevroletMicrosoft194.88436.9450.487
1022Joey LoganoFordShell Pennzoil194.40537.0360.578
115Kasey KahneChevroletFarmers Insurance194.13337.0880.63
1215Clint BowyerToyota5-Hour Energy193.60637.1890.731
1355David RaganToyotaAaron's Dream Machine Online Version193.63237.1840.726
142Brad KeselowskiFordMiller Lite193.55437.1990.741
159Sam Hornish JrFordTransportation Impact193.47637.2140.756
1641Kurt BuschChevroletHaas Automation193.30937.2460.788
1731Ryan NewmanChevroletCaterpillar193.30937.2460.788
181Jamie McMurrayChevroletCessna/McDonald's193.14937.2770.819
1921Ryan BlaneyFordMotorcraft / Quick Lane Tire & Auto Center193.12837.2810.823
2016Greg BiffleFordOrtho Ford Fusion193.02937.30.842
2124Jeff GordonChevroletPepsi193.00937.3040.846
2278Martin Truex JrChevroletFurniture Row/Visser Precision192.92137.3210.863
2310Danica PatrickChevroletGoDaddy192.77137.350.892
2427Paul MenardChevroletRichmond/Menards192.62237.3790.921
256Trevor BayneFordAdvocare Ford Fusion192.00537.4991.041
2647AJ AllmendingerChevroletKroger/Scott'Products191.82637.5341.076
2717Ricky Stenhouse JrFordZest Ford Fusion191.58637.5811.123
2851Justin AllgaierChevroletBrandt191.36737.6241.166
2926Jeb BurtonToyotaMaxim/Estes190.71337.7531.295
3043Aric AlmirolaFordArmour190.52737.791.332
3140Landon CassillChevroletSnap Fitness190.04937.8851.427
3283Matt DiBenedettoToyotaCosmo Motors190.04937.8851.427
337Alex BowmanChevroletAdvanced Patient Care189.38438.0181.56
3442Kyle LarsonChevroletTarget189.2338.0491.591
3535Cole WhittFordDockside Logistics LLC189.09138.0771.619
3638David GillilandFordMDS Transportation188.92738.111.652
3723J.J. YeleyToyotaDr. Pepper188.75338.1451.687
3834Brett MoffittFordCSX Play It Safe188.51638.1931.735
3946Michael AnnettChevroletPilot Flying J187.9838.3021.844
4013Casey MearsChevroletNo. 13 GEICO Chevrolet SS186.53338.5992.141
4132Josh WiseFordSKUTTLE TIGHT186.02238.7052.247
4233Travis KvapilChevroletTBA183.67339.22.742
4398Timmy HillFordPremium Motorsports183.04339.3352.877
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