Johnson Wins First Pole Of The Year At Charlotte

CONCORD, N.C. (AP) - Jimmie Johnson won the pole Thursday night for the Coca-Cola 600.

Johnson turned a lap at 194.911 mph at Charlotte Motor Speedway in the third round of NASCAR's knockout qualifying format for his first pole of the Sprint Cup season.

Brad Keselowski will start alongside Johnson on the front row Sunday night in the longest Sprint Cup race of the year. It's the seventh time this season Keselowski will start on the front row.

Kasey Kahne was third, followed by Danica Patrick and Clint Bowyer.

Johnson, winless this season, has won the race three times.

Sprint Cup points leader Jeff Gordon's struggles in practice runs carried over to qualifying. He will start 27th - one spot behind last week's All-Star race winner, Jamie McMurray.

Qualifying order:

1. Jimmie Johnson
2. Brad Keselowski
3. Kasey Kahne
4. Danica Patrick
5. Clint Bowyer
6. Denny Hamlin
7. Kyle Busch
8. Joey Logano
9. Marcos Ambrose
10. Dale Earnhardt Jr
11. Kevin Harvick
12. Matt Kenseth
13. Aric Almirola
14. Trevor Bayne
15. Martin Truex Jr
16. Brian Vickers
17. Justin Allgaier
18. Tony Stewart
19. Brian Scott
20. AJ Allmendinger
21. Paul Menard
22. Carl Edwards
23. Ricky Stenhouse Jr
24. Greg Biffle
25. Kyle Larson
26. Jamie McMurray
27. Jeff Gordon
28. Kurt Busch
29. Alex Bowman
30. Michael McDowell
31. Cole Whitt
32. Austin Dillon
33. David Gilliland
34. Casey Mears
35. David Ragan
36. Ryan Truex
37. Josh Wise
38. Joe Nemechek
39. Michael Annett
40. Landon Cassill
41. Reed Sorenson
42. Ryan Newman
43. Blake Koch

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