Kurt Busch Starting 16th in Saturday's All-Star Race

May 20, 2011

CONCORD, N.C. (May 20, 2011) – Shell-Pennzoil Dodge driver Kurt Busch will start Saturday night's Sprint All-Star Race from the 16th spot after a pitting issue slowed the "Double-Deuce" team's effort in tonight's time trial effort.  Qualifying for tomorrow night's special rich non-points race featured the unique format of three laps under the clock with a four-tire pit stop thrown into the equation.

"We made some good adjustments on the car and felt like we picked up our overall lap time," said Busch, the defending champion in this weekend's battle.  "I guess there was something that hung up in the rear gun (on the pit stop) as far as just trying to get our tires tight in a timely manner.  We'll see where we end up; we'll have to work our way from the back.  As for how the day's practice went, we were a little on the loose side and that was during the daytime.  We'll probably tighten her up a little bit and be good and fast at night."

The delayed work on the left-side tire change on the pit stop relegated Busch to a total time of 123.438 seconds (2:03.438).

Kyle Busch claimed the pole position for Saturday night's race with an overall elapsed time of 119.191 seconds (1:59.191).  Clint Bowyer will start second, with Greg Biffle third, Carl Edwards fourth and Mark Martin fifth.  Tony Stewart, Kasey Kahne, Juan Pablo Montoya, Jamie McMurray and Ryan Newman round out the top-10 starters.  Jeff Gordon, Matt Kenseth, Kevin Harvick, Denny Hamlin, Kurt Busch, Regan Smith and David Reutimann round out the 18 drivers already in the starting field.

The Sprint NASCAR Showdown kicks off tomorrow night's action here, with several entrants advancing to the All-Star Race from that preliminary event.  Penske Racing teammate Brad Keselowski starts fourth in the field of 27 drivers.

Saturday's Sprint All-Star Race will begin after the conclusion of the Showdown "last chance" race at approximately 9:00 p.m.  This year's exciting battle calls for a 50-lap/20-lap/20-lap/10-lap format with a four-tire pit stop prior to the start of the final segment.  Live coverage will be provided by SPEED-TV and MRN Radio.