Hamlins surprises with Dover pole, Bowyer starts second

Denny Hamlin has the pole for this week's Sprint Cup race at Dover International Speedway, where he has an average finish of 20.5 in 13 career starts.

Hamlin, who sits third in the points standings, turned a lap of 159.299 mph to win the pole for this week's Sprint Cup race on the one-mile cement oval.

The Delaware track has been troublesome for Hamlin, especially in the Chase.

"That was an amazing run.  Definitely wasn't what I expected, but it sure feels good to get a pole here.  Our car was really strong in race trim and really wasn't all that good in qualifying trim," said Hamlin. "Hopefully, this is a good sign of things that will give us a strong run here on Sunday."

Chase for the championship drivers Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex Jr. qualified second and third. Points leader Jimmie Johnson will start 11th.

"It's hard to pass here.  It's hard to be able to roll underneath of them, but that being said, I saw yesterday in practice cars moving up and using the top way, way sooner than usual," said Bowyer.  "A lot of people were fighting tight conditions yesterday -- me included -- and usually to be able to pass you have to be able to roll underneath of them.  It's going to be interesting to see what happens tomorrow with the weather changing.  It's cool today and the sun is supposed to be back out and it will be hot and slick tomorrow, so just have to be ready for whatever they will throw at you."

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