RFK Racing driver Buescher surprises at Dover with pole

Apr 29, 2022, 10:26 PM | Updated: Apr 30, 2022, 10:27 am

DOVER, Del. (AP) — Chris Buescher was the surprise pole winner Saturday at Dover Motor Speedway, turning a lap of 160.149 mph to win his first career top spot.

The RFK Racing driver will be joined on the front row by Denny Hamlin, ordered this week by NASCAR to begin sensitivity training after he posted an anti-Asian meme.

“Pretty cool of RFK to get our first pole,” Buescher said. “It’s a pretty cool start for us.”

Buescher also earned the first pole for RFK Racing in the No. 17 Ford. Brad Keselowski left Team Penske in November for an ownership stake in Jack Roush’s organization, forging a new partnership. Keselowski and Buescher opened strong for RFK Racing when they won the 150-mile qualifying races at Daytona International Speedway in February.

It’s been a bit of a rough ride over the past two months.

Keselowski was rocked last month with crushing penalties for illegal modifications made to his Ford and Buescher hasn’t finished better than 15th in his any of his last four races. Buescher has only one career win over 232 career Cup starts.

“It’s been a long time coming,” Buescher said. “We’re slowly and steadily building up through the season. It’s not the race. We have a lot of laps left to go. But a heck of a start.”

Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott for Hendrick Motorsports start third and fourth in Chevrolets. Ryan Blaney rounds out the top five for Sunday’s race on the mile concrete track.

Hamlin, a three-time Daytona 500 winner who drives a Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing, shrugged off a messy week to go 159.744 mph in the No. 11 Toyota and starts second. Hamlin posted an anti-Asian meme from the television comedy “Family Guy” that criticized Kyle Larson’s driving on the last lap at Talladega Superspeedway last weekend.

Hamlin deleted the tweet Monday night and apologized.

“I think if you historically look back to my performance to distraction, it correlates to a pretty good weekend,” Hamlin said. “I’d probably bet on us if I were you.”

___

More AP auto racing: https://apnews.com/hub/auto-racing and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, right, drives to the basket toward Portland Trail Bl...
Associated Press

Bucks beat Trail Blazers 127-108 for 8th straight win

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Brook Lopez scored 27 points and the Milwaukee Bucks stretched their winning streak to eight games with a 127-108 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday night. Giannis Antetokounmpo had 24 points and 13 rebounds as the Bucks led the whole way, pushing their advantage to 26 in the second […]
1 day ago
Golden State Warriors guard Jordan Poole (3) passes the ball past Oklahoma City Thunder forward Jal...
Associated Press

Thompson scores 42 points with 12 3s, Warriors beat Thunder

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — With star teammate Stephen Curry sidelined, Klay Thompson kept shooting and took care of the offensive load the Golden State Warriors were missing without their reigning NBA Finals MVP. Thompson scored 42 points with a season-high 12 3-pointers, Jordan Poole added 21 points and career-best 12 assists starting in Curry’s place, […]
1 day ago
Donna Kelce greets her sons, Philadelphia Eagles center Jason Kelce, left, and Kansas City Chiefs t...
Associated Press

Donna Kelce brings cookies for sons at Super Bowl opener

PHOENIX (AP) — Donna Kelce brought cookies to Super Bowl opening night. The mother of All-Pros Travis and Jason Kelce surprised her sons during an interview with NFL Network’s Michael Irvin with two batches of cookies — one for each. “It’s just been amazing that they’ve both been able to get to this point in […]
1 day ago
Arizona Coyotes defenseman J.J. Moser (90) and Minnesota Wild center Sam Steel collide in the secon...
Associated Press

Chrychrun scores twice as Coyotes beat Wild 3-2

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) — Jakob Chychrun had two goals, Jack McBain scored the tie-breaking goal on a breakaway with seven minutes remaining and the Arizona Coyotes beat the Minnesota Wild 3-2 on Monday night. McBain put a back-hander past Marc-Andre Fleury moments after the Coyotes killed off an abbreviated 55-second power play. Karel Vejmelka had […]
1 day ago
Dallas Mavericks Josh Green (8) goes to the basket as Utah Jazz forward Lauri Markkanen, left, defe...
Associated Press

Green, Hardy help Mavs surprise Jazz 124-111 without Doncic

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Kyrie Irving hadn’t arrived yet and Luka Doncic was out, so it was time for the Dallas youngsters to shine. Josh Green and Jaden Hardy each scored career highs of 29 points and the short-handed Mavericks stunned the Utah Jazz 124-111 on Monday night after completing a trade for Irving. […]
1 day ago
Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, right, and Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hu...
Associated Press

Mahomes, Hurts aware of significance of this Super Bowl duel

PHOENIX (AP) — Philadelphia Eagles coach Nick Sirianni is thrilled young aspiring football players all over the world will get to watch two Black quarterbacks face each other for the first time in the Super Bowl. He’s also pleased they get to watch two really, really good quarterbacks. “I’m really excited for both quarterbacks, what […]
1 day ago
RFK Racing driver Buescher surprises at Dover with pole