ROCKINGHAM, N.C., Nov. 2 (UPI) -- Ryan Newman made it look easy Friday as he won the pole for the NASCAR Busch series Sam's Club 300 at North Carolina Motor Speedway.
Newman, who will be competing for Winston Cup Rookie of the Year honors next season, captured the pole in a Ford Taurus with a lap of 154.007 miles per hour around the 1.017-mile oval.
It was Newman's sixth Busch series pole in 14 tries.
"I haven't been counting poles this year, but we try to do the best we can each week," said Newman, who drives for team owner Roger Penske. "We came here with the same car we took to Loudon and the same car we had here in the spring. We qualified second and finished ninth in my first Busch race, so it has some pretty good history behind it.
"It has never sat on the pole, but it's good to have another car to sit on the pole. It had a pretty good lap, but I didn't expect it to be as good as it was. I thought my second lap was faster than the first just based on how the other cars were doing."
Kenny Wallace, who later took the pole for the Winston Cup Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn 400, qualified second at 153.073 mph in a Chevrolet. Winston Cup regular Kevin Harvick, who has a 198-point lead over Jeff Green in the Busch series standings, was third at 152.366 mph in a Chevrolet.
Green was fourth in a Ford at 151.728 mph followed by Greg Biffle at 151.427 mph, also in a Ford.
Harvick can clinch the Busch series title by finishing 25th or better in each of the last two races. He can win it outright on Saturday if he finishes with a 186-point lead over Green.