Edwards tops in qualifying at Watkins Glen

SPORTS NETWORK

, Last Updated: 2:33 PM ET

WATKINS GLEN, NY - Carl Edwards claimed his first Sprint Cup Series pole in two years by winning Saturday's qualifying for the Heluva Good! Sour Cream Dips at The Glen at Watkins Glen International.

Edwards turned a lap of 124.432 m.p.h. around the 2.45-mile road course in Upstate New York for his fifth career Sprint Cup pole, but his first since August 2008 at Bristol (69 races ago).

"It feels good; I feel like I won the race just having that fast of a lap here," Edwards said. "It will be different to start up front, and I think that will be something good for us on Sunday."

Edwards qualified 0.35 seconds ahead of Jamie McMurray, who will start on the outside pole.

"I really love road racing, and I feel like there's a lot of pressure on me when I come here, because I always talk about going go-karting, and most of the karters give me a hard time if I don't do well, so it makes me feel good for the go-karters in America that I qualified well," McMurray said.

McMurray's Earnhardt Ganassi Racing teammate, Juan Pablo Montoya, took the third starting spot, while A.J. Allmendinger and Kurt Busch rounded out the top-five.

Tony Stewart, who leads all drivers with five wins at Watkins Glen, including a victory here one year ago, qualified sixth

"It's going to be a lot better of starting spot than where we were last year," said Stewart, who won last year's race at Watkins Glen from the 13th starting spot. "I'm pretty happy with it, and that will give us the starting spot that we need."

Greg Biffle, who was fastest in both practices on Friday, qualified eighth, followed by Jimmie Johnson, who won his first road course race earlier this season at Sonoma, CA, and Kyle Busch, the 2008 race winner at Watkins Glen.

Kevin Harvick, the current points leader, will start 20th. Harvick holds a 189-point advantage over Jeff Gordon, who will roll off 16th.

Dale Earnhardt Jr., making his 500th career Cup start this weekend, qualified 40th.

J.J. Yeley, Dave Blaney and Tony Ave failed to qualify.

Sunday's 90-lap race at Watkins Glen is scheduled to start shortly after 1:00 p.m. (et).

08/07 14:23:41 ET


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