Busch qualifies third in formally water-logged truck

FORT WORTH, Texas -- Kyle Busch qualified third Thursday for the NASCAR race at Texas in a truck that was salvaged two nights earlier from a hauler fire that destroyed the team's primary truck and a lot of equipment.

"With the black soot, you couldn't read the number on the side of it this morning," Busch said after his lap of 178.183 mph.

The hauler for Billy Ballew Motorsports was destroyed by fire late Tuesday night near Shreveport, La., when it was en route to Texas for Friday night's Chevy Silverado 350K. Busch said the backup truck and a scarred pit box were the only things that were salvaged.

"Everything else is gone. It's unfortunate for Billy," Busch said. "I'm sure the $1 million in insurance won't cover all that was lost."

Rick Crawford, making his 22nd start at Texas, earned his first pole at the 1½-mile track with a qualifying lap of 178.826 mph. It is only his fifth pole in 295 career races.

Cale Gale qualified second at 178.778 mph. Series points leader Johnny Benson qualified 20th, 13 spots behind Ron Hornaday Jr., who trails him by only 31 points.

Busch, the runner-up to Hornaday at Texas in June, said the salvaged truck was full of water after firefighters put out the fire. The crew worked overnight Wednesday pumping the engine and making sure everything ran OK.

"It seems like everything is just normal with it," Busch said. "I'll put a car freshner in it, hang it from the mirror."