February 9, 2009 6:15 PM

Kenseth Turns in 23rd Fastest Time in Daytona 500 Qualifying

DEWALT Team set to start 11th in Thursday's First Session of Gatorade Duels

Daytona Beach, Fla. (Feb. 8, 2009) -- Roush Fenway Racing's Matt Kenseth covered the 2.5-mile oval of Daytona International Speedway in 48.228 seconds (186.614 mph) to post the 23rd best qualifying time in Sunday's time trials for the Daytona 500. 

As a result, Kenseth will start his No. 17 DEWALT Ford Fusion on the inside of row six in 11th position in the first session of Thursday's Gatorade Duel 150 qualifying races. Results of the duel races will determine starting positions for Sunday's Great American Race.

“That's actually a little better than we expected," said Kenseth. "We worked on qualifying as hard as we could work on it within the rules, but if you’re not in the top two it doesn’t really matter.  We wanted to get the best lap we could for starting spots for the Gatorade Duels, and that’s about what we could run.

"Now we'll just go to work on getting ready for Thursday and then see what we have for the 500."

Martin Truex Jr. won the pole during Sunday's session.

The first Gatorade Duel race (60 laps, 150 miles) is set for 2 p.m. EST on Thursday (Feb. 12), and will be televised live by Speed Network. Sunday's Daytona 500 (200 laps, 500 miles) is slated for 3:30 p.m. with television coverage beginning at 2 p.m. on FOX.

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