KANSAS CITY, Kansas (AP) — Kevin Harvick shattered his own Kansas Speedway track record on Friday and won the pole to start the second round of the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship on Sunday.

After setting the mark at 197.773 mph (318.285 kph) in his second round of qualifying, he turned a marginally slower lap in the final round to earn the pole.

"For whatever reason this fits everything I have going on with my driving style," said Harvick, who won his third straight pole at Kansas and also won last year's Chase race.

"In the end it comes down to having a fast car. We have a fast car."

He has had that most of the season, too. The pole was Harvick's eighth this year.

"With a little bit of good luck we can beat every car on the race track any given week at any style of race track, and that's really positive feeling to have as a driver," he said. "If the chips fall right we have the cars and the speed to do what we need to do."

Brian Vickers qualified second and Aric Almirola was third.

Joey Logano began a run of five Chase contenders by qualifying fourth. Jeff Gordon was next, followed by Brad Keselowski, Kyle Busch and Dale Earnhardt Jr.

Tony Stewart qualified ninth, his best effort since returning to the track following the Sprint Car accident that killed a rival driver.

Chase contenders Ryan Newman and Denny Hamlin were tied to the thousandth of a second for the final transfer spot in the first round of qualifying.

Newman, who drives for Richard Childress Racing, wound up winning the tiebreaker based on owner's points over Hamlin, who drives for Joe Gibbs Racing. Newman improve his positioning by eight spots and will start 17th, while Hamlin will start 25th.

His teammate, Matt Kenseth, will start 27th.

Defending series champion Jimmie Johnson spun out during his first qualifying effort and will start 32nd, the lowest he has started a Chase race since 2005 at Homestead.

It is also the worst Johnson has qualified this season.

The race at Kansas kicks off the three-race contender round of the Chase, which will whittle the field from 12 drivers to eight. The round continues at Charlotte, another fast intermediate track, and finishes at the crapshoot known as Talladega.