Thursday, November 22, 2007


Ryan Newman, driver of the No. 12 Alltel Dodge Charger, qualified second Friday for the season finale Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Sunday.

Newman, who was 12th among the 49 drivers attempting to make this year's final race, recorded a lap of 30.583 seconds – 176.569 mph – just 0.038 of a second behind pole sitter Jimmie Johnson's time of 30.545 seconds.

"Honestly, I didn't think it [my lap] was near as good as it was speed-wise," Newman said during his post-qualifying press conference. "When they said it was a 58 (seconds) I was like, 'Man that is really good.' Knowing that the track was a little bit hotter, we tuned on the car and made it over a 10th quicker, so I really didn't expect Jimmie (Johnson) to come and bust out that lap.

"I really thought that after practice Kasey (Kahne) was going to be the guy to beat and he was…he just wasn't the only guy to beat. It was a good, smooth lap. I just didn't feel like I slipped the car enough to make it go any faster. In saying that, if I did, it might have gone slower."

Newman's front-row start gives him four top-five starts at the 1.5-mile track and ties his career-best start. He started second in 2005 and finished seventh. Newman now has a 7.0 starting average at the South Florida track.

Coverage of Sunday's Ford 400 at Homestead-Miami Speedway will be televised live by ABC and broadcast by MRN Radio beginning at 3 p.m. EST.

Line-up for the Ford 400:
1. Jimmie Johnson, No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet
2. Ryan Newman, No. 12 Alltel Dodge
3. Kasey Kahne, No. 9 Dodge Dealers Lifetime Powertrain Warranty/UAW Dodge
4. Matt Kenseth, No. 17 DeWalt NANO Technology Ford
5. Kurt Busch, No. 2 Miller Lite Dodge
29. Sam Hornish Jr., No. 06 Mobil 1 Dodge

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