Stewart takes Atlanta pole, assist to Newman

During pole qualifying for Sunday’s AdvoCare 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway on Friday, Tony Stewart received some words of advice from Stewart-Haas Racing teammate Ryan Newman, who had already made his qualifying attempt, on how to make a fast lap around the track.

The information received from Newman, a seven-time pole sitter at Atlanta, paid off, as Stewart was able to put down a 29.787-second lap that was good enough for the pole.

“That lap is 100 percent due to Ryan Newman,” Stewart said. “If it weren’t for him, we wouldn’t be on the pole, probably.”

Come race time on Sunday evening, Stewart will be joined on the front row by Greg Biffle, who posted the second-fastest qualifying lap time of 29.863 seconds on Friday.

“It was quite a bit better than practice was,” Biffle said of the handling of his car. “It sort of hurts, though, to qualify second like we did today.”

Kyle Busch and Matt Kenseth qualified third and fourth to claim second row starting spots.

Drivers including Joey Logano, Mark Martin, Jeff Gordon and Biffle held the provisional pole position until the top starting spot was ultimately claimed by Stewart. Gordon wound up fifth by the end of qualifying.

“Just a solid lap, Gordon said. “Can’t say it was the greatest lap.

Forty-seven drivers made qualifying attempts on Friday. With only 43 spots on the starting grid, Josh Wise, Stephen Leicht, Mike Bliss and Michael McDowell failed to make the reace.

– Photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR

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Topics: Atlanta Motor Speedway, NASCAR, Qualifying, Tony Stewart

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