FOUNTAIN, Colo. (AP) Martin Truex Jr. capitalized on cool weather and a 70-minute rain delay to break the track record in NASCAR Busch series
qualifying Friday at Pikes Peak International Raceway.
His speed of 137.478 mph on the 1-mile oval broke the record of 135.629, set by Jeff Purvis in 2000. It was Truex's sixth pole of the year and the
fifth time he's broken a track standard.
"When that rain came down and washed the rubber off, we had all the grip," Truex said. "It's tough to get days like this, but when you do you've got
to make the most of them. And we did."
In all, 13 drivers surpassed the old record. Rookie sensation Kyle Busch, whose lap was run much earlier than that of Truex, had the second-fastest
speed at 137.384. That put two Chevrolets on the front row for Saturday's Goulds Pumps/ITT Industries 250.
"To go out there early and put up a good lap, and give somebody something to shoot for, that's probably why we lost the pole," Busch said.
Truex and Busch have been battling each other all season. Truex leads the series standings with 2,993 points. Busch is second with 2,899.
"We'll be able to get (Truex)," Busch said. "We'll be all right. We've got some things we can do to make the car faster."
David Stremme was third-quickest, turning a fast lap in a Ddoge at 137.221. He hopes the race helps reverse a recent spate of mishaps with engine
problems and wrecks.
"First, second, third, it doesn't matter to us - something to turn this luck around," Stremme said.