NASCAR Sprint Cup Series
 
                 === Gordon tops Harvick for Charlotte pole ===
 
 Concord, NC (SportsNetwork.com) - Jeff Gordon grabbed the pole for the Bank of
 America  500 after  topping Kevin  Harvick in  Thursday night's  qualifying at
 Charlotte Motor Speedway.
 
 Gordon,  who  was the driver to  qualify in the  43-car field, turned a lap at
 194.308  mph for his  second pole of the season and the 74th of his Sprint Cup
 Series  career. The  Hendrick Motorsports  driver is  currently fourth  in the
 Chase  for the  Sprint Cup championship standings. He is 32 points behind Matt
 Kenseth, who qualified 20th. Gordon has yet to win a race this season.
 
 It was the ninth pole for Gordon at Charlotte, which moved him into a tie with
 Ryan Newman for second most poles here. David Pearson holds the record with 14
 at this track.
 
 "That  is  awesome," Gordon said.  "It's been a while  since we've done a pole
 here  at Charlotte  as well as doing it  in that kind of fashion. The way that
 the  draw was  today, there were a  lot of fast cars going late in qualifying.
 But  when you  didn't see the lap times  picking up as much as we thought they
 were going to, I didn't know if that late draw would really be a big factor."
 
 Gordon's  first career pole  in the series came at Charlotte on Oct. 10, 1993,
 which  made  him the youngest  pole winner  at this track.  He was 22 years, 2
 months and 6 days old at the time.
 
 Harvick  was the  second-to-last driver to qualify. He posted a lap at 194.203
 mph, which was 0.015 seconds behind Gordon's lap.
 
 "I  felt  like I didn't get  everything in (turns)  3 and 4," Harvick. "I knew
 from  the way things  were going and the way practice was that I needed to get
 everything  I could in 1  and 2, and not get tight coming off of turn 4. And I
 probably lost the pole right there."
 
 Last  Friday at  Kansas, Harvick ended a 254-race pole drought in NASCAR's top
 series.  He  survived a  season-high 15  cautions and held  off Kurt Busch and
 Gordon in the closing laps for his third win of the season.
 
 "We  would've  really liked to have  the pole tonight, but everybody knows how
 we've  qualified in past, and to be on the front row is going to be an amazing
 benefit for us," Harvick said.
 
 Greg Biffle qualified third, while Gordon's teammate, Jimmie Johnson, took the
 fourth  spot.  Kasey Kahne  and  Dale  Earnhardt  Jr.  were fifth  and  sixth,
 respectively, giving Hendrick four of the top-six starting spots.
 
 Earnhardt,  who turned 39 years old on Thursday, is expected to make his 500th
 career start in the series on Saturday night (7:30 p.m. ET).
 
 Johnson, a six-time race winner at Charlotte, is presently three points behind
 Kenseth.
 
 Newman  placed  seventh, followed by Juan  Pablo Montoya and brothers Kyle and
 Kurt  Busch.  The top-10  finishers in  qualifying are in  the Chase, with the
 exception of Montoya.
 
 The  remaining Chase drivers and their starting positions include: Joey Logano
 (12th), Clint Bowyer (14th) and Carl Edwards (15th).
 
 10/10 21:33:34 ET

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