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Chase Elliott wins pole for Cup playoff race at Talladega

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Playoff driver Chase Elliott will start from the pole in Sunday’s Cup Series playoff race at Talladega Superspeedway (2 p.m. ET on NBC).

Elliott claimed the top spot with a speed of 192.707 mph and led a Hendrick Motorsports sweep of the first four positions.

He was followed by Alex Bowman (192.552 mph), William Byron (192.258) and non-playoff dirver Jimmie Johnson (191.566).

The top five was completed by playoff driver Aric Almirola (191.551).

For Elliott, who won the spring Talladega race, it is his fifth pole on a superspeedway and the second at Talladega. He enters the race below the cutoff line to advance to the third round.

“Just a really nice effort I feel by our team,” Elliott told NBCSN. “To have all four Hendrick cars 1-2-3-4 is a pretty strong performance I feel like from our shop, our body shop and our engine department and obviously from Chevrolet. … We’ll try to make the most of good pit (box) pick and try to stay with our friends as much as we can tomorrow and stay out of trouble.”

The top qualifying Toyota driver was Erik Jones in 11th.

Denny Hamlin did not complete his qualifying run after his engine expired during it. He’ll have to start from the rear due to an engine change.

Where the remaining playoff drivers will start Sunday:

Brad Keselowski – sixth

Clint Bowyer – eighth

Ryan Blaney – ninth

Joey Logano – 10th

Kyle Larson – 12th

Kevin Harvick – 15th

Martin Truex Jr. – 18th

Kyle Busch – 26th

Click here for the qualifying results.

Matt Crafton wins pole for Truck Series race at Talladega

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Matt Crafton won the pole for today’s Gander Outdoors Truck Series race at Talladega (1:30 p.m. ET on FS1).

He claimed the top starting position with a speed of 180.925 mph. It is his third pole of the season and his first career pole on a superspeedway.

Fellow playoff driver Tyler Ankrum will start second.

The top five is completed by Harrison Burton, Johnny Sauter and Sheldon Creed.

Where the remaining playoff drivers will start:

Brett Moffitt – eighth

Stewart Friesen – 10th

Austin Hill – 13th

Ross Chastain – 17th

Click here for the starting lineup.


Chase Briscoe wins pole for Xfinity Roval race

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CONCORD, N.C. —  Defending race winner Chase Briscoe will start first in today’s Xfinity Series race on the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval(3:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN).

Briscoe claimed his first career Xfinity pole with a top speed of 100.346 mph. He is the 16th driver to get his first Xfinity pole on a road course.

The top five was completed by Tyler Reddick (playoffs), Austin Cindric (playoffs), Cole Custer (playoffs) and AJ Allmendinger.

The top 10 was rounded out by Alex Labbe, Justin Allgaier (playoffs), Jeremy Clements, Justin Haley (playoffs) and Will Rodgers.

Clements earned his best road course start in his 29th start.

Christopher Bell qualified 11th after he missed the backstretch chicane on his initial run in the second round.

Noah Gragson, who is in a backup car, did not make a second round qualifying round and will start 12th.

Only three playoff drivers did not advance to the second round of qualifying.

John Hunter Nemechek qualified 14th and Brandon Jones qualified 15th.

Michael Annett qualified 23rd, but he will start from the rear after going to a backup car following a wreck in practice Friday.

Click here for the starting lineup.

William Byron wins pole for Bank of America Roval 400

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CONCORD, N.C. —  William Byron won the pole for Sunday’s Cup Series race on the Charlotte Motor Speedway Roval (2:30 p.m. ET on NBC).

Byron claimed his fifth pole of the year with a speed of 103.198 mph. He is tied with Kevin Harvick for the most poles this year. Byron won the pole for the Daytona 500, Coca-Cola 600, Southern 500 and the June Pocono race.

Byron will be joined on the front row by his Hendrick Motorsports teammate and fellow playoff driver Alex Bowman. Byron leads Bowman by two points for the final cutoff spot to advance or the second round.

“I knew I was a little weak under the brakes the first couple of runs in (qualifying) trim today,” Byron told NBCSN. “Tried to fix it, maybe fixed it a little too good. … Really takes every corner around this race track to get a pole. I knew we could qualify top five but I was really wanting the pole.”

Byron has started from the front row for all three road course races this year.

Hendrick Motorsports has swept the front row the sixth time in 2019, including the last two road courses.

The top five is completed by Joey Logano (playoffs), Jimmie Johnson and Clint Bowyer (playoffs).

The top 10 is rounded out by Kevin Harvick (playoffs), Kyle Larson (playoffs), Martin Truex Jr. (playoffs), defending race winner Ryan Blaney (playoffs) and Paul Menard.

Chase Elliott spun in the frontstretch chicane as he was completing his first lap in the first round. He went on to qualify 19th.

Bowyer and Larson each qualified in the top seven despite wheel hopping entering the backstretch chicane during their initial qualifying runs in the second round. Bowyer’s result is his best on a road course since 2013. Larson’s is his worst in the last 12 road course races.

Denny Hamlin posted the 28th fastest lap, but he will have to start from the rear Sunday after going to a backup car following a wreck in practice.

Where the remaining playoff drivers qualified:

Brad Keselowski – 11th

Erik Jones – 15th

Aric Almirola – 16th

Kyle Busch – 17th

Chase Elliott – 19th

Kurt Busch – 23rd

Ryan Newman – 24th

Denny Hamlin – 28th

Click here for the qualifying results.

Brad Keselowski wins provisional pole for Richmond Cup race

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Playoff driver Brad Keselowski has won the provisional pole for Saturday’s Cup Series playoff race at Richmond Raceway (7:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN).

He claimed the pole with a speed of 127.185 mph.

The starting lineup will be finalized tomorrow after pre-race inspection. One failure will result in a qualifying time being disallowed. Should it be made official it will be Keselowski’s third pole of the season, his most since earning three in 2015.

“I didn’t know what to expect, we didn’t do a qualifying run in practice, but we’ve had phenomenal short-run speed here,” Keselowski told NBCSN. “Haven’t necessarily qualified all that well but when the race comes we get the short runs and and we can really make some steam.”

The top five is completed by playoff drivers Kevin Harvick, Chase Elliott, Kyle Busch and Clint Bowyer.

Jimmie Johnson (10th) was the highest qualifying non-playoff driver.

Where the rest of the playoff drivers qualified:

Denny Hamlin – sixth

Aric Almirola – seventh

Martin Truex Jr. – eighth

Kurt Busch – ninth

Kyle Larson – 13th

Ryan Blaney – 15th

Erik Jones – 16th

Ryan Newman – 19th

Alex Bowman – 20th

William Byron – 25th

Joey Logano – 28th

Click here for the provisional starting lineup.