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Jay Hart

Daytona 500: Qualifying

From The Marbles

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Welcome to Yahoo! Sports live coverage of Daytona 500 qualifying. Stick with us and we'll fill you in on all the action.

1:28: Dale Earnhardt Jr. has clocked the fastest lap - 190.913 mph. He's sitting on the pole right now.

1:36: It's pretty windy here in Daytona. Drivers are getting a push down the backstretch, but it's making it squirrely for some.

1:38: Last year's pole winner Martin Truex Jr., driving for Michael Waltrip Racing now, is only ninth fastest out of 11 cars so far.

1:40: We've got a new pole sitter and it's Mark Martin, clocking a lap of 191.88 mph.

1:44: Walked through the Nationwide garage a little bit ago and there was a huge crowd standing outside Danica Patrick's hauler. She'll make her stock car debut this afternoon in the ARCA race.

1:45: Mark Martin just said, "I was flying, and I knew it. ... I can't wait to get started racing." Remember, he's never won a Daytona 500. "It's time," Martin said. "This is the best shot I've had."

1:47: Greg Biffle is 13th out of 14 cars so far. The Roush Fenway cars have not shown any speed so far in what limited track time we've seen.

1:57: Not a great run for Boris Said. He's dead last of the 17 cars that have gone so far. He'll get in regardless. He has the owner's points on the No. 26.

2:00: Just a reminder - they are only setting the top two spots today. The rest of the field is set by finishing order in Thursday's Duel 150s. So, if you're not No. 1 or No. 2 today, then your starting spot is not set. As of now, the front row is Mark Martin and Dale Earnhardt Jr.

2:19: Jimmie Johnson just put down the fifth-fastest qualifying lap. He wasn't terribly quick in practice. Mark Martin is still looking good. Probably the only driver left to qualify who can overtake Martin is his teammate, Jeff Gordon.

2:31: Carl Edwards is 16th-fastest, just behind his teammate, David Ragan, who is the fastest of the three Roush drivers to have gone out so far.

2:35: At 51, Mark Martin would be the oldest Daytona 500 pole winner. Dale Jarrett won the pole when he was 48.

2:39: Jeff Gordon is ninth-fastest. Gordon was probably the last driver who could challenge Martin for the pole.

2:51: Joe Nemechek is not guaranteed a spot in the Daytona 500, but he just clocked the 13th-fastest lap and the fastest of those drivers who need to qualify on time to get in. That should hold up for "Front Row" Joe.

3:10: For those unsure how qualifying for the Daytona 500 goes, you're not alone. It's confusing. But I'll give it a try: the top two qualifiers today are on the front row. The top 35 in owner's points from last year are in, however their starting position is determined by how they finish in Thursday's Duels. The top three or four drivers in today's qualifying who are not in the top 35 will also get in. That leaves four to five spots still up for grabs in the Duels. ... I think.

3:24: Two-time Daytona 500 winner Michael Waltrip was only 20th fastest, meaning he will have to race his way into next Sunday's race.

3:48: That's it. Mark Martin is your pole winner. Dale Earnhardt Jr. will start second. The rest of the field will be set in Thursday's Duels.

3:56: Aside from last year's top 35 in owner's points, who are locked in, Bill Elliott, Scott Speed and Joe Nemechek have also assured themselves spots in the Daytona 500.

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