Matt Kenseth wins pole for 1st Chase race

September 17, 2011 - 3:25 PM

JOLIET, Ill. (AP) — Matt Kenseth will open the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship on the pole at ChicagoLand Speedway.

Kenseth had the fastest qualifying lap Saturday with a speed of 183.243 mph in his Roush Fenway Racing Ford. It gives him the first starting spot in Sunday's race, the opening event of the Chase.

Paul Menard qualified second for Richard Childress Racing with a lap of 183.125 mph in a Chevrolet. He is not one of the 12 drivers eligible for the championship.

Chase drivers took the next four spots as Kurt Busch qualified third and was followed by Ryan Newman, Carl Edwards and Brad Keselowski.

Kevin Harvick was the lowest qualifying Chase driver at 30th.