JGR Qualifying Report &#151 Sylvania 300

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Date: Sept. 15, 2006
Event: Sylvania 300 Qualifying
Series: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series
Location: New Hampshire International Speedway in Loudon (1.058-mile oval)
Pole Winner: Kevin Harvick of Richard Childress Racing
JGR Lineup: Denny Hamlin (5th); Tony Stewart (32nd); J.J. Yeley (36th)

Denny Hamlin, driver of the No. 11 FedEx Express Chevrolet, led the three-car Joe Gibbs Racing contingent by qualifying fifth for Sunday's Sylvania 300 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at New Hampshire International Speedway in Loudon. Hamlin turned a lap of 29.149 seconds at 130.667 mph on the 1.058-mile oval. "It was a great effort for us," said Hamlin. "Usually you don't gain a lot of speed here in qualifying, so to pick up a little bit from practice, that was good." His Joe Gibbs Racing teammates - Tony Stewart in the No. 20 Home Depot Chevrolet and J.J. Yeley in the No. 18 Interstate Batteries Chevrolet - qualified 32nd and 36th, respectively. Stewart turned a lap of 29.509 seconds at a speed of 129.072 mph, while Yeley timed in at 29.610 seconds and 128.632 mph. "We were just loose," said Stewart. "I think we got a little too aggressive with the front end there. We'll get it fixed up in practice tomorrow." "We just struggled with the car being too tight in practice," said Yeley. "It's just like the front end is on ice. We just can't get the car to rotate in the center very well. I've got all the faith in the guys to make some changes. We're trying something different from what we had here in the spring, and we had a pretty decent car back then. We're going to make some changes and see if we can't get better in happy hour." Kevin Harvick captured his fifth career pole position and his first of the season with a time of 28.793 seconds at a speed of 132.282 mph. Rounding out the top-five in qualifying were Jeff Gordon (28.909 seconds at 131.751 mph), Kurt Busch (28.968 seconds at 131.483 mph), Ryan Newman (29.027 seconds at 131.216 mph) and Hamlin. Forty-eight drivers attempted to qualify for the 300-lap race. Those not making the cut in the 43-car field were Derrike Cope, Chad Blount, Carl Long, Kenny Wallace and Stanton Barrett. As far as manufacturers went, Chevy took the top spot thanks to Harvick's pole-winning mark while Dodge was next best at the hands of Busch. Carrying the flag for Ford was eighth-quick Greg Biffle (29.255 seconds at a speed of 130.139 mph). The Sylvania 300 gets underway on Sun., Sept. 17 at 1:30 p.m. EDT. TNT will broadcast the race live and in high-definition.

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