CONCORD, NC - Tony Stewart took the pole at Charlotte Motor Speedway, outracing Matt Kenseth and points leader Carl Edwards on Thursday night.
Stewart covered the 1½-mile layout with a speed of 191.959 to start up front for the Bank of America 500 on Saturday night.
Kensenth was a tick slower at 191.918 mph, while Edwards was next at 191.870 mph.
It was Stewart's first pole in more than year since Pocono in August of 2010 and his first at Charlotte in 26 chances.
Stewart stands seventh in the Chase for a Championship, 19 points behind Edwards.
Drivers had anticipated a run at the Elliott Sadler's 2005 qualifying record of 193.216 after a super-fast practice session. But speeds didn't pick up when the sun went down.