Date:             April 19, 2013

Event:            STP 400 Qualifying (Round 8 of 36)

Series:           NASCAR Sprint Cup Series

Location:        Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan. (1.5-mile oval)

Pole Winner:   Matt Kenseth of Joe Gibbs Racing (28.145 seconds at 191.864 mph – new track record)

SHR Lineup:    Ryan Newman (9th, 28.388 seconds at 190.221 mph)

                     Tony Stewart (18th, 28.568 seconds at 189.023 mph)

                     Danica Patrick (25th, 28.758 seconds at 187.774 mph)                        

Ryan Newman, driver of the No. 39 Code 3 Associates Chevrolet SS, led the three-car Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR) contingent in time trials Friday at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan., by qualifying ninth for the STP 400 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race Sunday. Newman turned a lap of 28.388 seconds at 190.221 mph around the 1.5-mile oval, the only Chevy driver to qualify in the top-10. 

“We take our cars to the limit, and it was a good run for our Code 3 Associates Chevrolet,” said Newman, who won at Kansas in 2003. “Matt (Borland, crew chief) and the guys did a good job off the truck and the car was really good. Even though we’re not on the pole, I’m much happier with that lap than I’ve been on a lot of the intermediate tracks we’ve qualified on this year.” 

Tony Stewart, driver of the No. 14 Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1 Chevrolet SS, will start 18th after posting a lap of 28.568 seconds at 189.023 mph.

“We were too free going into turns one and two and then back to the gas,” said Stewart, who is a two-time winner at Kansas (2006 and 2009). “It was pretty cold today and it’s supposed to warm up starting tomorrow, so hopefully that helps our Bass Pro Shops/Mobil 1 Chevy get around this place a little better.”

Danica Patrick, driver of the No. 10 Chevrolet SS for SHR, qualified 25th after clocking in at 28.758 seconds at 187.774 mph.

“We improved from practice, which was good,” said Patrick, who will make her 18th career Sprint Cup start on Sunday and her second at Kansas. “We would’ve liked to have been top-20 with the Go Daddy Chevrolet, but we’ll take the small gain. It’s just a matter of improving each week.”

Matt Kenseth captured his ninth career Sprint Cup pole, his first of the season and his second at Kansas by turning a lap of 28.145 seconds at 191.864, breaking the previous Sprint Cup track qualifying record of 28.219 seconds at 191.360 mph set by Kasey Kahne on Oct. 19, 2012. 

Carl Edwards will start on the outside of row one after clocking in at 28.162 seconds at 191.748 mph. Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. was third (28.164 seconds at 191.734 mph), while Sam Hornish, Jr. (28.213 seconds at 191.401 mph) and Kyle Busch (28.294 seconds at 190.853 mph) rounded out the top-five. 

Forty-four drivers attempted to qualify for the STP 400. The lone driver failing to make the 43-car field was Joe Nemechek.

Toyota took the top spot among manufacturers via Kenseth’s pole run. Ford was next-best at the hands of Edwards. Newman carried the flag for Chevrolet.

The STP 400 gets underway at 1 p.m. EDT Sunday with live coverage provided by FOX beginning with a pre-race show at 12:30 p.m.