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Harvick, Ky. Busch claim second row for the Daytona 500



Daytona Beach, FL (Sports Network) - Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch will start on the second row for Sunday's Daytona 500 after both drivers won the Budweiser Duel twin-qualifying races on Thursday at Daytona International Speedway.

Harvick grabbed the third starting position for the 500-mile race after taking the checkered flag for the first qualifier. Harvick, who won last Saturday's Sprint Unlimited preseason event at Daytona, held off Greg Biffle at the finish line by just 0.16 seconds. It was the first time he has won a qualifier in 11 attempts.

"It's been a great start to Speedweeks, obviously with the Unlimited," Harvick said. "To get our first win with Budweiser (Harvick's team sponsor) onboard for the first time in the Duels is really cool. The guys have just done a great job. Everybody thought we would qualify a little bit better, but we felt really good about our car yesterday after practice and felt like we could make some moves."

Biffle also finished second to Harvick in the preseason event. He will start fifth in the Daytona 500.

Juan Pablo Montoya finished third, while Jimmie Johnson and Kurt Busch rounded out the top-five.

Sixth through 10th were: Tony Stewart, Brad Keselowski, the reigning Sprint Cup Series champion, Casey Mears, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Joey Logano. Earnhardt had to start from the rear of the field after blowing an engine during Wednesday's practice for the qualifiers.

Bobby Labonte, David Gilliland, Joe Nemechek, Michael Waltrip and Scott Speed placed 11th through 15th, respectively.

Martin Truex Jr. crossed the line in the top-10, but Truex was black-flagged by race officials after the side window came off of his car. His 19th-place finish allowed Speed to grab a spot in the Daytona 500.

"We're in, so that's good," Speed said.

Waltrip, who won the Daytona in 2001 and '03, made the race after missing it for the first time last year. Waltrip's No. 26 Swan Racing Toyota has a special paint scheme honoring the shooting victims at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

"It's just an honor to be able to race this car," Waltrip said. "We went to Newtown a couple weeks ago and met with the town. Couldn't wait to give them something to smile about. It's been obviously a tough couple of months. All the fans are texting Newtown, 80888, rebuilding the town, whatever they need that money for, we're glad we can help out.

"We know we're going to give them something to cheer about in the 500. There's so many race fans in the northeast, it's an honor to race it."

In the second qualifier, Busch edged Kasey Kahne to the finish line by 0.09 seconds for his second win in this event. With no cautions, it took just 46 minutes and 24 seconds to complete at an average speed of 193.966 mph, making it the second quickest Duel in its history.

"It was hard to pass the leader," Busch said. "You just stay out front when you can get out front, and you can run pretty good and just try to hold everybody off behind you. There wasn't enough lane-by-lane racing. But, it's awesome to be able to put the (car) in victory lane."

Austin Dillon will make his first start in the Daytona 500 after finishing third in the qualifier. Clint Bowyer and Matt Kenseth, who won last year's 500-miler, rounded out the top-five.

Mark Martin, Paul Menard, Jeff Burton, Jamie McMurray and David Ragan placed sixth through 10th, respectively.

Finishing 11th through 15th were: Marcos Ambrose, Jeff Gordon, Aric Almirola, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., a rookie in the series this year, and Dave Blaney.

The top-15 finishers in each of the two qualifiers guaranteed themselves a starting position in the Daytona 500.

Danica Patrick and Gordon had already secured the front row for the Daytona 500. Patrick won the pole position, while Gordon grabbed the second starting position during last Sunday's time trials.

Since Gordon finished 12th in the second Duel, Josh Wise's 16th-place run earned him a spot in the 500. Gordon dominated most of the race by leading 38 of the 60 laps, but a pit road speeding penalty late in the event put him out of contention to win.

"This is why you want to qualify on the front row because of a little incident like that (pit road speeding penalty)," Gordon said. "That is why we race this race. It's nice because we need to learn that now on the (tachometer) and on pit road to make sure that doesn't happen in the 500."

After starting on the pole for the first qualifier, Patrick played it safe by dropping to the back of the draft. She ran there for most of the event before moving through the field en route to a 17th-place finish.

"It's not an exciting mission when you've just got to bring it home, but it is for the Daytona 500, so you've got to keep that in mind," Patrick said.

The first qualifier ran caution free until seven laps remaining when a multi- car crash occurred on the backstretch. Denny Hamlin got loose coming out of turn two and bumped into Carl Edwards, who spun around and slammed hard into the outside wall. Edwards has now crashed three times during Speedweeks activities at Daytona.

"This is the worst Speedweeks start I have ever had," Edwards said. "I don't think I have crashed this many race cars in two years."

Trevor Bayne, the 2011 500 Daytona winner, and Regan Smith were involved in the wreck as well. Bayne had led the first 37 laps before Harvick ran in front for remaining 23 circuits.

The only incident that occurred in the final Duel was Ryan Newman spinning around on the frontstretch after he could not get onto pit road during the round of stops. Newman punctured a tire and fell two laps off the pace to finish 21st. He was already guaranteed a spot in the 500 based on his fourth- place result in time trials.

Mike Bliss and Brian Keselowski, who is the elder brother of Brad Keselowski, failed to make the starting lineup for the Daytona 500. Keselowski placed 21st in the 23-car field for the first qualifier, while Bliss finished last in the 22-car field for the second event.

02/22 01:56:44 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
CAR 4
TOR 1
Final
DUKE 66
UCONN 56
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
CHA
Final
CHI 103
NYK 97
Final
HOU 90
NOP 99
Final
SAC 107
MIL 108
Final
GSW 114
OKC 109
7:00pm Tonight
PHI
CHA
7:00pm Tonight
ORL
UTA
7:30pm Tonight
CLE
BRK
7:30pm Tonight
BOS
MIN
7:30pm Tonight
DET
TOR
7:30pm Tonight
MIA
WAS
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
CHI
8:00pm Tonight
SAN
POR
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
LAC
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
OKC
Final
RICE 72
STTHOMASTX 61
 
Final
UVA 70
CLST 54
Final
LIU 69
FIU 58
 
Final
STET 67
GSOUT 76
 
Final
QUIN 80
LEH 65
 
Final
SFLA 69
SHU 89
Final
RICH 65
SALA 54
Final
CAN 60
USB 59
 
Final
DEL 62
TEMPL 82
Final
WCU 56
WRST 69
 
Final
VERM 56
YALE 57
 
Final
SDKST 75
IDST 72
 
Final
RIDE 62
MRGST 48
 
Final
LATU 79
NICST 54
 
Final
CHAR 75
APP 65
Final
MISS 71
CCAR 68
 
Final
DUKE 66
UCONN 56
Final
BRAD 80
EUREK 38
 
Final
PEAY 76
OAKC 52
 
Final
JST 66
SMISS 46
 
Final
SD 55
MNTST 53
 
Final
UAB 70
LSU 79
Final
EVAN 81
OHIO 69
 
Final
CSFU 72
CSDH 50
 
Final
ORST 90
DEP 59
Final
PAC 69
NEV 65
Final
USF 77
PORST 40
 
Final
IDAHO 86
WALLA 39
 
Final
UTST 57
CALST 56
 
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YOUNG
WILB
 
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TULA
JST
 
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RAD
SIENA
 
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MERC
COOK
 
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BUCK
CASEWEST
 
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LIB
CPNC
 
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SCAR
CLEM
 
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CMICH
CONC
 
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MIAMI
EKENT
 
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GWEBB
HIWASSEE
 
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ODU
MDES
 
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BUF
NIAG
 
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KSU
NCAT
 
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FAM
UNF
 
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NORST
NARZ
 
7:00pm Tonight
DART
NILL
 
7:00pm Tonight
MORE
NKENTUCKY
 
7:00pm Tonight
UCSB
SDCHR
 
7:00pm Tonight
STJ
GAELS
 
7:00pm Tonight
ALA
STILL
 
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HAMP
TENST
 
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TENN
TENT
 
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WMARY
WSHMD
 
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FLGC
FUR
 
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CALST
SDKST
 
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MTST
CHAT
 
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NDAK
DICKINSON
 
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LAMON
LSUALEX
 
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PRIN
LIP
 
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LAM
MLGN
 
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MINN
SEAT
 
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LOYC
SUTAH
 
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SELA
WINT
 
8:05pm Tonight
SILL
NO
 
9:00pm Tonight
MARQ
ALAAM
 
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TTU
ARKPB
 
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DEN
COLST
 
9:00pm Tonight
CREI
TXPA
 
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CAL
EWASH
 
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UTST
IDST
 
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UTEP
ARZ
 
11:59pm Tonight
CHAM
HAW
 
Final
PIT 1
COL 0
Final
PHI 1
FLA 2
Final
CAR 4
TOR 1
Final
CLB 4
WAS 5
Final
MON 1
ANA 2
Final
SJS 4
EDM 3
Final
LOS 6
STL 4
7:00pm Tonight
NJD
TAM
 
7:30pm Tonight
OTT
ANA
 
7:30pm Tonight
DET
NYI
 
8:00pm Tonight
WIN
BOS
 
9:00pm Tonight
CAL
DAL
 
Final
JAC 21
TEN 13