PIT NOTE #8 Saturday, May 17, 2014

ALL-STAR PERFORMERS TAKE OVER CMS - NASCAR fans visiting Charlotte Motor Speedway for the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race are only entertained by the very best in the music industry. Country music standout Jake Owen and multi-platinum selling band Train were on-hand to sing their biggest hits during free concerts for fans.

The infield of turns 1 and 2 was packed with fans excited to see Jake Owen at the All-Star Backyard Experience presented by Lowe's, Pennington Seed and Kingsford Charcoal. The 2009 ACM Top New Male Vocalist turned it into a party with his high energy performance. The set list included his first hit "Yee Haw," his latest single "Beachin'" and all of the number one songs in between.

Time Warner Cable and Fox Sports 1 invited fans to enjoy the Train concert on pit road.   The crowd danced and sang along to the band's biggest songs including "50 Ways to Say Goodbye" and "Save Me, San Francisco." One lucky fan was able to join them on stage to sing "Bruises" with lead singer Pat Monahan in place of country singer Ashley Monroe, who was not at the track. The three-time GRAMMY Award winners even surprised the massive crowd with a tribute to legendary band Led Zeppelin.

In addition, country music's Darius Rucker was on hand to perform the national anthem.

CARL EDWARDS WINS WILD QUALIFYING - Fans out early for Saturday's NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race got the added bonus of the most unique qualifying session of the season as drivers took to the track for a three-lap run that includes a mandatory four-tire pit stop and no pit road speed limit.

In the end, it was Roush Fenway's Carl Edwards who took the pole and will lead the field to green in tonight's $1 million all-star shootout.

"This is fun qualifying. If I don't mess this up, this could be a good night," Edwards said. "You never know what's going to happen. Hopefully we can make the right decisions and stay out front. This is fun."

Edwards will start the 90-lap race alongside Kyle Busch, who bested the field in last night's North Carolina Education Lottery 200. Kevin Harvick, Jeff Gordon and Jimmie Johnson round out the top five.

Michael Waltrip Racing driver Clint Bowyer, who raced his way into tonight's main event by virtue of winning the 40-lap Sprint Showdown Friday night, qualified ninth.

"I didn't get a chance to practice any of that," Bowyer said of his qualifying effort. "We were just happy to be in that qualifying race. I called in scared coming into pit road. I'm ready. We're gonna have fun."