Junior Rockets To Atlanta Pole
March 5, 2010 | 7:30 P.M. EST
Earnhardt turned in a lap of 192.761 mph in his Hendrick Motorsports No. 88 Chevrolet to earn his first Cup Series pole since Texas Motor Speedway in April of 2008.
"We had a great engine, obviously this track is a place where power is really going to show up," said Earnhardt, who won his ninth career pole and second at AMS. "The car did everything I asked it to and I'm hoping starting upfront will give us a chance to go to victory lane."
Kyle Busch will start outside the front row in his Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 Toyota.
Juan Pablo Montoya, Mark Martin and Jeff Gordon rounded out the top five to give Hendrick Motorsports three drivers in the first quintet.
"I was surprised a bit at how fast we were," said Montoya, who is hoping to rebound from last week's accident with teammate Jamie McMurray at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. "We really haven't put any more focus on qualifying lately but the results have been there and that's good."
Last fall's Atlanta race winner Kasey Kahne was sixth with Ryan Newman, Elliott Sadler, David Reutimann and Carl Edwards completing the first 10 qualifiers.
Terry Cook, Aric Almirola and Casey Mears did not qualify for Sunday's race.
Sunday's Kobalt Tools 500 is slated for a 1:15 p.m. ET green flag.