Jeff Gordon is on such an unbelievable streak even he's amazed by it.
Gordon won his fourth straight pole on the NASCAR Nextel Cup circuit yesterday afternoon, shattering the track record at the Tropicana 400 in Joliet, Ill., with a lap of 186.942 mph. That's more than two miles faster than the previous mark of 184.786 mph set last year by Tony Stewart.
"I've been very fortunate to have some good streaks along the way, but this streak is pretty amazing right now," said Gordon, who is looking for his third straight victory Sunday.
Gordon is the first driver to win four straight poles since Bill Elliott in 1985. It's the 51st pole of Gordon's career, tying Bobby Isaac for seventh on the career list. It's his 12th top-10 start of the season, most of any driver this year.
Kasey Kahne (186.871) finished second, and series points leader Jimmie Johnson (186.290) was third. Brian Vickers was next at 185.750 mph, giving Hendrick Motorsports three of the top four teams.
Gordon tails Johnson by 232 points, a whopping margin in years past. But this year, NASCAR will reset the field with 10 races to go, and all drivers in the top 10 will run for the championship.
"We needed to get on this type of streak to keep ourselves in the top 10 in points," Gordon said. "I want to be on this type of streak those last 10 races. I don't think there's any reason why we shouldn't be able to maintain these things.
"Karma, the whole thing has to be working in your favor," Gordon said. "And it is right now."
* BUSCH SERIES: Defending champion Bobby Hamilton Jr. ran away with the pole at the Tropicana Twister 300 just as he did for last year's race at the 11/2-mile D-shaped oval in Joliet, Ill. Hamilton set a Busch track record with a lap at 183.611 mph, more than a mile faster than Kyle Busch. Busch was second in qualifying at 182.125 mph.
* TORONTO MOLSON INDY: Paul Tracy stayed far away from nemesis Alex Tagliani and took the provisional pole position. The hometown favorite, who won the race from the pole last year and also won here in 1993, turned a fast lap of 59.407 seconds (106.351 mph) on his sixth of 14 laps around the 1.775-mile, 11-turn temporary street course on the edge of downtown Toronto.