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Jimmie Johnson wins first pole of the year at Charlotte

CONCORD, N.C. – Jimmie Johnson won the pole Thursday night for the Coca-Cola 600.

Johnson, winless this season, turned a lap at 194.911 mph at Charlotte Motor Speedway in the third round of NASCAR’s knockout qualifying format for his first pole of the Sprint Cup season.

Brad Keselowski will start alongside Johnson on the front row Sunday night in the longest Sprint Cup race of the year. It’s the seventh time this season Keselowski will start on the front row.

Kasey Kahne was third, followed by Danica Patrick and Clint Bowyer.

Sprint Cup points leader Jeff Gordon will start 27th – one spot behind last week’s All-Star race winner, Jamie McMurray.

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