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Hamlin Sets Bristol Track Record With Pole-Winning Run

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Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Freight Toyota, celebrates winning the pole position after qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway on March 14, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee.  (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

Denny Hamlin, driver of the #11 FedEx Freight Toyota, celebrates winning the pole position after qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Food City 500 at Bristol Motor Speedway on March 14, 2014 in Bristol, Tennessee. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

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BRISTOL, Tenn. (AP) – Denny Hamlin has set a track record at Bristol Motor Speedway with his pole-winning run Friday in knockout qualifying.

Hamlin turned a lap at 129.991 mph to earn the top starting spot for the NASCAR Sprint Cup race Sunday. He broke the mark of 129.535 set by Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch a year ago.

Hamlin also snapped two weeks of dominance by Team Penske drivers Brad Keselowski and Joey Logano. The teammates swept the front row at Phoenix and Las Vegas, where the new format was first used.

Both Penske drivers made one last effort to grab the pole from Hamlin, and Keselowski came up just short in second with a lap at 129.965.

Hamlin’s teammate, Matt Kenseth, qualified third and Logano wound up fourth.

Marcos Ambrose rounded out the top five.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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