After finishing first in the NASCAR Cup Series playoff opener Sept. 6 at Darlington Raceway, Kevin Harvick will start first Saturday in the starting lineup for the middle race of the first round at Richmond Raceway.
Here are the starting positions for the rest of the 16 playoff drivers (in order): William Byron (fifth), Kyle Busch (sixth), Denny Hamlin (seventh), Kurt Busch (eighth), Brad Keselowski (ninth), Aric Almirola (10th), Clint Bowyer (11th), Chase Elliott (12th), Cole Custer (13th), Martin Truex Jr. (14th), Ryan Blaney (15th) and Matt DiBenedetto (16th).
STARTING LINEUP: Where everyone will start in the Federated Auto Parts 400
This will mark the third time that Harvick has led the field to the green flag in the past four races at Richmond, where NASCAR last raced Sept. 21, 2019.
Harvick also started on pole at Richmond in September 2018 and April 2019. The Stewart-Haas Racing driver has three victories at the track, most recently on April 27, 2013.
Harvick, who will be starting first in a Cup race for the fourth time this season, was awarded the Busch Pole Award using a formula based on four statistical categories: owner points position, the driver’s finish, team owner’s finish and fastest lap from the most recently completed race.
Since the playoffs began at Darlington Raceway last week, playoff cars now fill the top starting positions, according to how many remain eligible for the championship. In the Round of 16, the top 16 starting positions will be playoff cars; in the Round of 12, the top 12 starting positions will be playoff cars, etc..
NASCAR previously had used a random draw to set most of its lineups since returning in May during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, which has eliminated practice and qualifying on nearly all race weekends.
Click here for the Richmond Cup starting lineup for Saturday.
NASCAR Cup Series at Richmond
Race Time: 7:30 p.m. ET Saturday
Track: Richmond Raceway; Richmond, Virginia (0.75-mile speedway)
Length: 400 laps (300 miles)
Stages: Stage 1 ends Lap 80. Stage 2 ends Lap 235.
TV coverage: NBCSN
Radio: Motor Racing Network (also SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)
Streaming: NBC Sports app (subscription required); mrn.com and SiriusXM for audio (subscription required)
Next Xfinity race: Friday at Richmond (250 laps, 187.5 miles), 7 p.m. ET on NBCSN
Next Truck race: Thursday at Richmond (250 laps, 187.5 miles), 8 p.m. ET on FS1