Jeff Gordon, who leads the Winston Cup points standings and whose seven poles lead the circuit, posted a speed of 129.033 mph to capture the pole for Sunday's CMT 300 in qualifying at New Hampshire International Speedway in Loudon.
Elsewhere, Michael Schumacher showed why he has won the Belgian Grand Prix the last three years. The treacherous course in Spa-Francorchamps showed Mika Hakkinen and Jacques Villeneuve why it is part of Formula One lore.
Hakkinen and Villeneuve lost control at high speed and slammed into the protective barriers. They walked away from their crashes.
Schumacher kept his Ferrari on the track and finished the free practice first, just ahead of Hakkinen.
In Hampton, Ga., Billy Boat limped to his A.J. Foyt-prepared Dallara-Aurora racer using a cane to help support his compact, 5-foot-7, 140-pound body . . . and won another pole.
Boat, driving in only his second event since breaking his left leg and pelvis in a crash in June at Loudon, N.H., had a first qualifying lap of 224.109 mph that was fast enough to take the pole for the Pep Boys Indy Racing League's inaugural Atlanta 500 Classic tonight. But he made sure with a lap of 224.145, making him easily the fastest among 26 drivers who made qualifying attempts on the hot, humid evening.
In another event at Hampton, Chad Coleman was killed in a multicar crash on the first lap of the ARCA Georgia Power 200 stock car race. The Greenville, S.C., driver's car hit a wall almost head-on. Coleman was driving in only his fourth race in the ARCA Bondo-Mar-Hyde series.