Qualifying for the all-star gathering consists of three laps around the Charlotte Motor Speedway plus a four-tire pit stop. Edwards did all that in 1 minute, 51.297 seconds to put a Rousch Fenway Racing driver on the pole for the first time in the history of the race.
In a change of policy, NASCAR allowed drivers to ignore the usual pit lane speed limit during qualifying and some drivers were running at more than 150 mph while traveling along the narrow route to their pits.
"It was petrifying," Edwards said. "It was insane during practice. It felt like a war out there or something."
The high speeds along pit road affected some drivers, chiefly defending All-Star champion Jimmie Johnson.
Johnson ran through his pit box and had to back up, costing him valuable time. He wound up as the 18th fastest qualifier in the 22-car field.