Denny Hamlin claims Dover pole

The provisional pole didn’t change much during Friday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series qualifying session at Dover (Del.) International Speedway to set the starting lineup for Sunday’s FedEx 400 at the track. Ryan Newman claimed the provisional pole early on in the session. He was eventually knocked from the provisional top spot by Denny Hamlin, who turned in a time of 22.788 seconds, and Hamlin occupied the position the rest of the way to claim his second-career Dover pole and his third pole of the season.

“We’ve been qualifying pretty good, which has really helped out our cause with our race finishes,” Hamlin said. “Overall, I’ve been happy with everything. I feel like I’ve gained a lot of knowledge in how to qualify better. It’s all helping out our cause for the moment.”

By the end of the qualifying session, Toyota held position of the top-four starting spots, with Martin Truex Jr. in second, and Hamlin’s Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Kyle Busch and Matt Kenseth in third and fourth.

Newman claimed top honors among those not in a Toyota, winding up fifth by the end of qualifying.

“It was pretty good,” Newman said of his lap. “I got just a little bit loose off of (turn) four because I was tight climbing the hill. A good run for our Haas Automation Chevrolet. The guys have done a good job the entire time in qualifying trim. We definitely want to see it pay off in qualifying.”

Brad Keselowski had the fastest Ford, qualifying eighth. Other drivers in the top-10 include Mark Martin in sixth, Kevin Harvick in seventh, Joey Logano ninth and Jamie McMurray rounding out the top-10.

With 43 drivers attempting to qualify for the 43-car field, everyone who made a qualifying lap received a spot on the starting grid.

– Photo courtesy of Getty Images for NASCAR

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Tags: Denny Hamlin Dover International Speedway NASCAR

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