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Kurt Busch turns record lap at Darlington

  • Andretti Autosport team owner Michael Andretti, left, and NASCAR driver Kurt Busch wait for the start of a testing session at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Thursday, May 9, 2013. Busch was driving an Indycar for the first time during the test. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

    Andretti Autosport team owner Michael Andretti, left, and NASCAR driver Kurt Busch wait for the start of a testing session at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Thursday, May 9, 2013. Busch was driving an Indycar for the first time during the test. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

  • Andretti Autosport team owner Michael Andretti, left, and NASCAR driver Kurt Busch wait for the start of a testing session at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Thursday, May 9, 2013. Busch was driving an Indycar for the first time during the test. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

    Andretti Autosport team owner Michael Andretti, left, and NASCAR driver Kurt Busch wait for the start of a testing session at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Thursday, May 9, 2013. Busch was driving an Indycar for the first time during the test. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

  • Andretti Autosport team owner Michael Andretti, left, and NASCAR driver Kurt Busch wait for the start of a testing session at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Thursday, May 9, 2013. Busch was driving an Indycar for the first time during the test. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)
  • Andretti Autosport team owner Michael Andretti, left, and NASCAR driver Kurt Busch wait for the start of a testing session at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Thursday, May 9, 2013. Busch was driving an Indycar for the first time during the test. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

Kurt Busch set a Darlington Raceway record in earning the pole for the Southern 500 yesterday.

Busch’s lap of 181.918 mph earned him his third career pole at Darlington and broke the two-year old mark of 181.254 mph held by Kasey Kahne. Defending champion Jimmie Johnson will start alongside Busch, followed by Kyle Busch, Kahne and Martin Truex Jr.

Kurt Busch got a strong start toward erasing an agonizing 10-year-old memory at Darlington. He was second here in 2003 behind Ricky Craven by .002 seconds – the closest finish in Sprint Cup history since the series went to electronic timing in 1993.

The record lap came less than a week after Kurt Busch finished his race at Talladega by going airborne and landing on competitor Ryan Newman.

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