Auto Racing | Leader Gordon wins pole
Jeff Gordon won't have to pass Jimmie Johnson this time. Gordon, who is the Nextel Cup Series points leader, failed for 53 laps at the end...
MARTINSVILLE, Va. — Jeff Gordon won't have to pass Jimmie Johnson this time.
Gordon, who is the Nextel Cup Series points leader, failed for 53 laps at the end of the spring race at Martinsville Speedway to get around his Hendrick Motorsports teammate, and wound up second as Johnson took the checkered flag on NASCAR's shortest circuit.
This time, Johnson will have to get around a teammate. Gordon won the pole for Sunday's Subway 500 at 94.974 mph on the 0.526-mile circuit on a rainy Friday.
The pole is the 63rd of Gordon's career, his seventh this season and the sixth of his career at Martinsville. He also has won seven times at the track, tops among active drivers.
Johnson, 68 points back in second, will start fourth in the Subway 500.
Martin Truex Jr. will start second, Kevin Harvick will start in third and Kasey Kahne of Enumclaw will start in fifth. Vancouver, Wash., native Greg Biffle was 37th in qualifying.
• Lewis Hamilton, fastest in practice for Sunday's season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix in São Paulo, illegally used a second set of wet tires.
The 22-year-old McLaren driver, who is trying to become the first rookie to win the title and the youngest Formula One champion, was among three drivers facing potential penalties for using two sets of wet tires during the first practice session.
FIA officials met for several hours before fining McLaren $21,400, but the drivers were not punished.
• NHRA superstar John Force, 58, a 14-time Funny Car champion, is expected to be released today from a Dallas hospital — 27 days after a crash at the O'Reilly NHRA Fall Nationals resulted in several broken bones and other injuries.
Copyright © 2007 The Seattle Times Company
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