NASCAR Sprint Cup title contender Matt Kenseth will start from pole position for the 2013 championship decider at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Kenseth needs a minor miracle in Sunday’s race as he trails leader Jimmie Johnson by 28 points following a poor performance at Phoenix a week ago. But he did everything he could on qualifying day by putting the Joe Gibbs Toyota on pole with a lap 0.038 second quicker than early provisional polesitter Kurt Busch in the Furniture Row Chevrolet.
Johnson qualified seventh, just behind long-shot title prospect Kevin Harvick. Penske duo Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski fill row two, with Kenseth’s teammate Denny Hamlin completing the top five.
Future Stewart-Haas teammates Busch and Harvick are among several drivers making their final starts with their current employers at Homestead.
Martin Truex Jr., who will replace Busch at Furniture Row next year, was the fastest Waltrip driver in eighth. IndyCar-bound Juan Pablo Montoya qualified 27th for what is likely to be his final NASCAR start.
Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap 1. Matt Kenseth Joe Gibbs Toyota 30.394s 2. Kurt Busch Furniture Row Chevrolet 30.432s +0.038s 3. Joey Logano Penske Ford 30.460s +0.066s 4. Brad Keselowski Penske Ford 30.498s +0.104s 5. Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Toyota 30.535s +0.141s 6. Kevin Harvick Childress Chevrolet 30.568s +0.174s 7. Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Chevrolet 30.578s +0.184s 8. Martin Truex Jr Waltrip Toyota 30.606s +0.212s 9. Ricky Stenhouse Jr Roush Fenway Ford 30.606s +0.212s10. Elliott Sadler Waltrip Toyota 30.610s +0.216s11. Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Toyota 30.620s +0.226s12. Paul Menard Childress Chevrolet 30.620s +0.226s13. Kasey Kahne Hendrick Chevrolet 30.629s +0.235s14. Jeff Burton Childress Chevrolet 30.726s +0.332s15. Ryan Newman Stewart-Haas Chevrolet 30.729s +0.335s16. Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Ford 30.736s +0.342s17. Trevor Bayne Wood Brothers Ford 30.768s +0.374s18. Carl Edwards Roush Fenway Ford 30.781s +0.387s19. Aric Almirola Petty Ford 30.791s +0.397s20. Kyle Larson Phoenix Chevrolet 30.795s +0.401s21. Dale Earnhardt Jr Hendrick Chevrolet 30.796s +0.402s22. Mark Martin Stewart-Haas Chevrolet 30.809s +0.415s23. Marcos Ambrose Petty Ford 30.838s +0.444s24. Danica Patrick Stewart-Haas Chevrolet 30.841s +0.447s25. Clint Bowyer Waltrip Toyota 30.896s +0.502s26. Jeff Gordon Hendrick Chevrolet 30.926s +0.532s27. Juan Pablo Montoya Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet 30.939s +0.545s28. Jamie McMurray Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet 30.976s +0.582s29. David Ragan Front Row Ford 30.978s +0.584s30. Parker Kligerman Swan Toyota 31.183s +0.789s31. David Gilliland Front Row Ford 31.196s +0.802s32. David Reutimann BK Toyota 31.293s +0.899s33. Travis Kvapil BK Toyota 31.343s +0.949s34. Michael McDowell Parsons Ford 31.348s +0.954s35. Josh Wise Front Row Ford 31.387s +0.993s36. AJ Allmendinger JTG Daugherty Toyota 31.444s +1.050s37. JJ Yeley Baldwin Chevrolet 31.447s +1.053s38. Dave Blaney Baldwin Chevrolet 31.599s +1.205s39. Landon Cassill Circle Sport Chevrolet 31.675s +1.281s40. Casey Mears Germain Ford 31.736s +1.342s41. Ken Schrader FAS Lane Ford 31.742s +1.348s42. Joe Nemechek NEMCO Toyota 31.799s +1.405s43. Tony Raines Hillman Chevrolet 32.300s +1.906s