Harvick, Busch win Daytona's Budweiser Duels

Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch Harvick, Busch won Daytona's Budweiser Duels on Thursday which set the race field for Sunday's Daytona 500.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (WACH/AP) -- Danica Patrick played it safe and kept her pole position for the Daytona 500.

Patrick started on the pole for the first 150-mile Budweiser Duel on Thursday and led the field to green. From there, Patrick was a non-factor in the No. 10 Chevrolet. All she needed to do was keep her car intact to preserve the top spot for Sunday's Daytona 500. She faded into the field and finished 17th.

She was nowhere near the four-lap spring that decided the race when Kevin Harvick held off Greg Biffle for the win. Harvick is 2 for 2 at Speedweeks. He also won last weekend's exhibition race.

Patrick says there's a "sense of relief" she escaped the race without any major mistakes. She says it wasn't fun not being able to race hard at the end for the win.

On Sunday, Patrick became the first woman in history to win a pole at NASCAR's Sprint Cup series

Kyle Busch won the second of Daytona's twin qualifying races by holding off a late charge from Kasey Kahne.

Busch will join Kevin Harvick in the second row of the season-opening Daytona 500 on Sunday.

Kahne finished second behind Busch after failing to get close enough to attempt a race-winning pass. Third went to

Austin Dillon, who earned a spot in his first Daytona 500.

The starting lineup for the Daytona 500 is set by the results of Thursday's races.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)