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Harvick earns first pole since 2006 for Sprint Cup race at Kansas Speedway

  • 7d4cb8fc72cd41213f0f6a70670030d8.jpg

    Driver Kyle Busch takes a lap during practice for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup series auto race at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan., Friday, Oct. 4, 2013. (AP Photo/Colin E. Braley) (The Associated Press)

  • 38f0250372cd41213f0f6a706700f775.jpg

    Driver Jimmie Johnson takes a lap during practice for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup series auto race at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan., Friday, Oct. 4, 2013. (AP Photo/Colin E. Braley) (The Associated Press)

  • 7cdd283f72f642213f0f6a706700f0dc.jpg

    Crew members use ice to cool down tires for driver Greg Biffle during practice for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup series auto race at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan., Friday, Oct. 4, 2013. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner) (The Associated Press)

Kevin Harvick turned the fastest lap in qualifying for Sunday's race at Kansas Speedway, and will sit on the pole for the first time since the 2006 season.

Harvick, who is tied for fourth in points, negotiated brutal crosswinds entering Turn 3 that ruined several good qualifying runs to post a lap of 187.526 mph on Friday. Ricky Stenhouse Jr. was second-fastest at 187.480 mph, followed by Jimmie Johnson with a lap of 187.162 mph.

Harvick was fastest in practice earlier in the day, and his first pole since Sept. 17, 2006, gives him the first pit stall for Sunday's race. That could prove especially important at a place where track position is of the utmost importance.

Points leader Matt Kenseth qualified seventh.

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