Edwards claims pole for Busch race at Lowe's

Updated: October 13, 2006, 7:16 PM ET
SportsTicker

CONCORD, N.C. -- Carl Edwards apparently will not simply roll over to Kevin Harvick.

Edwards barely edged out Roush Racing teammate Matt Kenseth in qualifying and will start from the pole in Friday night's NASCAR Busch Series Dollar General 300 at Lowe's Motor Speedway.

It was the third pole this season and the seventh career for Edwards, who enters Friday second in the series standings but a whopping 729 points behind runaway leader Harvick.

Edwards clocked in at at 186.245 mph in a Ford Fusion to qualify just ahead of Kenseth's Ford, which ran a lap at 186.181 mph.

"I really do believe Matt had the best car out there, but we'll see what happens," Edwards said. "It would be cool to race Matt here for the victory tonight."

J.J. Yeley's Chevrolet was third at 185.963 mph, followed by Mike Skinner's Chevrolet at 185.963 mph and Casey Mears' Dodge at 185.484 mph.

Harvick qualified eighth with a lap at 184.540 mph in a Chevrolet Monte Carlo. He is poised to clinch his second series championship if he gains 32 points on Edwards. Jeff Burton, Harvick's teammate at Richard Childress Racing, can also claim a third series owner title for Richard Childress with a 23-point gain.

Harvick is also fourth in the Nextel Cup "Chase for the Championship" and could become the first driver in NASCAR history to win both series titles in the same season. He is 33 points behind leader Burton and will start fifth in Saturday night's Bank of America 500.