Hamlin wins pole for critical race at Phoenix

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AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) – Denny Hamlin has won the pole Friday at Phoenix International Raceway, where eight drivers go into the race Sunday vying for the four spots in the championship finale.
   
Hamlin turned a lap at 142113 mph to put his Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota in the top starting spot. He was followed by Chase drivers Brad Keselowski and Kevin Harvick.
   
Harvick shoved Keselowski from behind into a scrum following last week’s race at Texas. It ignited a brawl between Keselowski, Jeff Gordon and their teams and both drivers were bloodied.
   
Joey Logano was fourth, followed by GR drivers Matt Kenseth and Kyle Busch. The top five drivers are all racing for the championship.
   
Gordon was seventh.
   
The lowest two qualifying Chase drivers were Carl Edwards in 13th and Ryan Newman in 20th.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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(478) 745-4141 ext. 310 Tucker Sargent joined the 41NBC news team in April 2012. He hails from "The Great State of Alabama," as he calls it, but you won't catch him saying "Roll Tide!" Tucker grew up near Auburn, before moving to north Alabama. He graduated from Danville High School in 2007 and loves to return to the Tennessee Valley any chance he gets. He moved back south to Troy, Alabama after high school, where he graduated from Troy University in 2011 with a B.S. in Broadcast Journalism. He interned in Huntsville at WAAY-TV before joining 41NBC. His passion is sports, and his favorite teams are the Auburn Tigers and Troy Trojans. On the weekends you can catch Tucker watching college football on Saturdays and NASCAR on Sundays! He's proud to call middle Georgia home for now and could always use a story idea from you, so don't hesitate to get in touch with him!