Vern Slagh claimed his first career Old Milwaukee Pole Award with a lap at 167.629 miles per hour on Thursday at Kentucky Speedway in qualifying for Friday's ARCA Re/MAX Blue Grass Quality Meats 200.

Slagh, who was second-fastest during the morning practice session, needed only 32.214 seconds to turn the fastest qualifying lap in his No. 22 DJ's One Stop-Quality Car Wash Ford Taurus.

"The car ran beautiful today," the 62-year-old Slagh said. "I love running this ARCA stuff. I just wish that I was 30 years younger. To be in this business you have to be young at heart."

Contact with the wall in Turn 2 knocked Slagh out of the Channel 5 155 at Kentucky Speedway in May after 55 laps. He qualified fourth for that race, his only previous start at Kentucky Speedway.

Series points leader Frank Kimmel (No. 46 Advance Auto Parts Ford), who has won the last three ARCA Re/MAX Series races at Kentucky Speedway, qualified second with a time of 32.389 seconds (166.723 mph).

"We had a good car in practice and had a good shot at the pole, but Vern was just faster," Kimmel said. "We are going to see at Happy Hour if there is anything that needs to be done to the car, but we don't do a whole lot between qualifying and the race."

Kimmel, who was a wire-to-wire winner in both ARCA races at Kentucky Speedway in 2001, won May's Channel 5 155 from the outside of Row One.

Chad Blount (No. 77 Braun Auto Group Dodge), who is third in the Series points, qualified third with a time of 33.044 (163.418). Blount, who finished second in the Channel 5 155, was the top rookie qualifier for the Blue Grass Quality Meats 200.

The NASCAR Craftsmen Truck Series Kroger 225 weekend continues on Friday with Cincinnati Enquirer-Post Pole Night featuring Truck Series qualifying (beginning at 5:30 p.m.) and final practice. Both will be followed by the ARCA Re/MAX Series Bluegrass Quality Meats race at 9:00 p.m. The NASCAR Craftsmen Truck Series takes center stage for the Kroger 225 on July 13 at 8:00 p.m. Gates open at 3 p.m. and the multitude of pre-race festivities will include a concert by country superstar Lee Greenwood.

In addition to the racing on the track, the United States Cowboy Tour will bring its "Racing Rodeo" to Kentucky Speedway.

Kentucky Speedway's All-American Weekend continues tomorrow, with NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series qualifying on "The Cincinnati Enquirer and Post Pole Night" and "The Blue Grass Quality Meats 200" at 9:00 p.m. The green flag drops for "The Kroger 225" at 8:00 p.m. on Saturday. Saturday's events include a pre-race concert by country music superstar Lee Greenwood, a special pre-race show honoring American heroes and a fireworks show.

Tickets for all 2002 events are available in five easy ways:

  • By phone at 1-888-652-RACE
  • On the World Wide Web at www.kentuckyspeedway.com
  • In person at either the speedway's Ft. Mitchell ticket office or at the Kentucky Speedway Fan Center off Ky. Hwy. 35 in Sparta, Ky.
  • At Tickets.com and all Tickets.com retail outlets located in Greater Cincinnati area Meijer Hader Hardware and Play-It-Again Sports stores.
  • In person at all Greater Cincinnati AAA locations.