Mark Martin claimed his fourth pole position of the season in qualifying for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Michigan.
The 53-year-old's lap was around two tenths of a second quicker than the previous pole benchmark set by Roush Fenway's Carl Edwards, at an average speed of 199.706mph around the two-mile oval.
Hendrick Motorsports' Kasey Kahne and Jimmie Johnson, both quicker than Michael Waltrip Racing driver Martin in practice earlier in the day, ran just after him in the order but could not match the veteran's speed or knock Edwards off the front row.
Martin's fourth pole of the season places underlines his status as the top Cup qualifier this year despite only being on a limited schedule. His 55th career pole arrives at one of his best tracks, where he has won five times, although this is his first pole at the venue.
"I didn't almost wreck on the first lap so I tried to go a little harder on the second lap," said Martin. "I'm designed and geared for one-lap qualifying. I know I can never make another lap that crazy, no matter what."
Points leader Johnson and Edwards' Roush Fenway teammate Matt Kenseth will start from the second row of the grid, ahead of Kahne and Wood Brothers' Trevor Bayne, the fastest of the non-guaranteed drivers.
Martin's teammate Martin Truex Jr. will line up second beside last week's Watkins Glen winner Marcos Ambrose, who sat on pole at Michigan with a new track record in June.
Parker Kligerman replaced Sam Hornish Jr. at the wheel of the No. 22 Penske Dodge as the three-time IndyCar champion practiced and qualified his Nationwide Series car in Montreal. Kligerman surprised by outqualifying his team-mate Brad Keselowski.
Richard Petty Motorsports' Aric Almirola clipped the wall as he was starting his flying lap due to an apparent part failure and will be forced to a back-up car for Saturday's practice and the race.
Dave Blaney did not set a time but will start Sunday's race thanks to his points status while Stephen Leicht and JJ Yeley failed to make the field.
Pos Driver Team/Car Time Gap
1. Mark Martin Waltrip Toyota 36.053s
2. Carl Edwards Roush Fenway Ford 36.249s + 0.196s
3. Jimmie Johnson Hendrick Chevrolet 36.283s + 0.230s
4. Matt Kenseth Roush Fenway Ford 36.330s + 0.277s
5. Kasey Kahne Hendrick Chevrolet 36.386s + 0.333s
6. Trevor Bayne Wood Brothers Ford 36.404s + 0.351s
7. Martin Truex Jr Waltrip Toyota 36.428s + 0.375s
8. Marcos Ambrose Petty Ford 36.457s + 0.404s
9. Landon Cassill BK Toyota 36.468s + 0.415s
10. Paul Menard Childress Chevrolet 36.518s + 0.465s
11. Jeff Gordon Hendrick Chevrolet 36.527s + 0.474s
12. Clint Bowyer Waltrip Toyota 36.546s + 0.493s
13. Greg Biffle Roush Fenway Ford 36.568s + 0.515s
14. Tony Stewart Stewart-Haas Chevrolet 36.571s + 0.518s
15. Ryan Newman Stewart-Haas Chevrolet 36.598s + 0.545s
16. Joey Logano Joe Gibbs Toyota 36.641s + 0.588s
17. Parker Kligerman Penske Dodge 36.688s + 0.635s
18. Regan Smith Furniture Row Chevrolet 36.694s + 0.641s
19. Brad Keselowski Penske Dodge 36.701s + 0.648s
20. Kevin Harvick Childress Chevrolet 36.725s + 0.672s
21. Denny Hamlin Joe Gibbs Toyota 36.743s + 0.690s
22. Dale Earnhardt Jr Hendrick Chevrolet 36.768s + 0.715s
23. Kyle Busch Joe Gibbs Toyota 37.248s + 1.195s
24. Jamie McMurray Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet 37.254s + 1.201s
25. Juan Pablo Montoya Earnhardt Ganassi Chevrolet 37.279s + 1.226s
26. Kurt Busch Phoenix Chevrolet 37.308s + 1.255s
27. Reed Sorenson Humphrey Smith Ford 37.362s + 1.309s
28. Bobby Labonte JTG Daugherty Toyota 37.384s + 1.331s
29. Casey Mears Germain Ford 37.391s + 1.338s
30. Travis Kvapil BK Toyota 37.395s + 1.342s
31. David Stremme Inception Toyota 37.430s + 1.377s
32. Jeff Burton Childress Chevrolet 37.445s + 1.392s
33. Jason Leffler Humphrey Smith Ford 37.460s + 1.407s
34. Josh Wise Front Row Ford 37.465s + 1.412s
35. Joe Nemechek NEMCO Toyota 37.477s + 1.424s
36. David Gilliland Front Row Ford 37.541s + 1.488s
37. David Ragan Front Row Ford 37.554s + 1.501s
38. Scott Riggs R3 Chevrolet 37.906s + 1.853s
39. David Reutimann Baldwin Chevrolet 38.088s + 2.035s
40. TJ Bell FAS Lane Ford 38.894s + 2.841s
41. Aric Almirola Petty Ford
42. Dave Blaney Baldwin Chevrolet
43. Mike Skinner Parsons Ford 37.907s + 1.854s
Did not qualify:
JJ Yeley Max Q Chevrolet 38.266s + 2.213s
Stephen Leicht Circle Sport Chevrolet 38.006s + 1.953s