Hendrick Motorsports

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Michigan qualifying: Martin on front row, Keselowski makes field

BROOKLYN, Mich. (Aug. 14, 2009) – Mark Martin set the pace for Hendrick Motorsports during Friday’s qualifying session at Michigan International Speedway.

Martin, driver of the No. 5 Kellogg’s/CARQUEST Chevrolet, went to Victory Lane on June 14 at the two-mile oval. On Friday, he circled the Michigan racetrack in 38.500 seconds at roughly 187.013 mph to claim the outside pole position for Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event.

This is the sixth time this season that Martin has scored a spot on the front row. Overall, a Hendrick Chevrolet has started on the front row 15 times in 23 Cup events this year.

Jimmie Johnson, driver of the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet, posted the fourth-fastest time, while Michigan native Brad Keselowski earned the 12th spot in the No. 25 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet. Sunday’s 400-mile event will mark Keselowski’s fifth Cup start this season with Hendrick Motorsports.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. will line up 15th in his No. 88 National Guard/AMP Energy Chevrolet, and Jeff Gordon, driver of the No. 24 DuPont Chevrolet, will roll off the grid in 21st.

Race coverage begins Sunday at 1 p.m. ET on ESPN, and the green flag is scheduled to drop at 2 p.m.