JGR Qualifying Report - UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400

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Date: March 10, 2006
Event: UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 Qualifying
Series: NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series
Location: Las Vegas Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval)
Pole Winner: Greg Biffle of Roush Racing
JGR Lineup: Tony Stewart (2nd); J.J. Yeley (12th); Denny Hamlin (16th) Tony Stewart, driver of the #20 Home Depot Chevrolet, qualified second for Sunday's UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway to lead the three-car contingent of Joe Gibbs Racing. "It was good. It picked up a lot of time. It was much better than it was in practice," said Stewart, who toured the 1.5-mile oval in 31.383 seconds with an average speed of 172.068 mph. "I'm just really happy. Zippy (crew chief Greg Zipadelli) and the guys and Jason (Shapiro) in his new role as car chief have done a really good job." Stewart's Joe Gibbs Racing teammates - J.J. Yeley in the #18 Interstate Batteries Chevrolet and Denny Hamlin in the #11 FedEx Freight Chevrolet - qualified 12th and 16th, respectively. Yeley clocked a time of 31.663 seconds with an average speed of 170.546 mph, while Hamlin timed in at 31.758 seconds with an average speed of 170.036 mph. "We had a real good lap," said Yeley. "I might have pushed the throttle a little too hard in (turns) one and two and got the car tight and it hurt me just a little bit. I definitely didn't have anything that was close to being on the pole, so there was no need to push extra hard trying to do something silly." "I think we expected a little better run after our practice times this afternoon, but we're satisfied with 16th," said Hamlin. "We made some adjustments to the #11 FedEx Freight Chevrolet following practice and they just didn't have the desired effect on our qualifying laps. What's important, though, is that the car was really good in race trim, so we'll use the practice time tomorrow to fine tune it for Sunday." Greg Biffle captured his second career pole position with a time of 31.322 seconds at an average speed of 172.403 mph. Rounding out the top-five in qualifying were Stewart, Jimmie Johnson (31.469 seconds at 171.597 mph), Kyle Busch (31.501 seconds at 171.423 mph) and Kasey Kahne (31.569 seconds at 171.054 mph). Forty-nine drivers attempted to qualify for the 267-lap race. Those not making the cut in the 43-car field were Stanton Barrett, Hermie Sadler, Brandon Ash, Mike Skinner, Morgan Shepherd and Randy LaJoie. As far as manufacturers went, Ford took the top spot via Biffle's pole-winning mark while Chevrolet claimed the next three positions thanks to Stewart, Johnson and Busch. Carrying the flag for Dodge was fifth-quick Kahne. The UAW-DaimlerChrysler 400 gets underway on Sun., March 12 at 4:30 p.m. EST. FOX will carry live coverage of the event.

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