NASCAR starting lineup at Atlanta: Kyle Busch wins first-ever pole after 20 tries
Kyle Busch will lead the field Sunday while Martin Truex Jr. will start at the back of the pack after failing to pass inspection.
Kyle Busch will lead the NASCAR Monster Energy Cup field of 36 to the green flag Sunday at Atlanta Motor Speedway (2:00 p.m. ET).
The veteran driver locked up his 28th career pole and his first at Atlanta in 20 tries after he posted a track best 184.652 mph. Ryan Newman will start second after posting 184.419 mph.
The bigger story of qualifying Friday, though, centered around a man who wasn't even on the track. Reigning Series champion Martin Truex Jr. failed to pass inspection on three attempts and will start in the back row.
Truex Jr. won seven of the 11 races on 1.5-mile tracks last season and finished in the top five nine times. He could have attempted to pass inspection one more time, but had he failed again he would have lost crew chief Cole Pearn for the race. Truex decided to cut his losses and move on.
All eyes will be on Georgia native Chase Elliott this weekend as he looks to capture his first Cup Series win at his hometown track. Back in the No. 9 car, a number made famous by his Hall of Fame father Bill, Elliott will start 27th after a disappointing qualifying round.
Austin Dillon, who won last week's Daytona 500 will start 25th.
Starting lineup for the QuikTrip Folds of Honor 500
- (18) Kyle Busch, 184.652 mph
- (31) Ryan Newman, 184.419 mph
- (4) Kevin Harvick, 184.388 mph
- (19) Daniel Suarez, 184.229 mph
- (2) Brad Keselowski, 183.856 mph
- (17) Ricky Stenhouse Jr., 183.722 mph
- (41) Kurt Busch, 183.485 mph
- (42) Kyle Larson, 183.449 mph
- (14) Clint Bowyer, 182.284 mph
- (20) Erik Jones, 181.052 mph
- (10) Aric Almirola, 0.00 mph
- (11) Denny Hamlin, 0.00 mph
- (1) Jamie McMurray, 182.825 mph
- (95) Kasey Kahne, 182.507 mph
- (21) Paul Menard, 182.464 mph
- (22) Joey Logano, 182.129 mph
- (34) Michael McDowell, 181.955 mph
- (88) Alex Bowman, 181.634 mph
- (43) Darrell Wallace Jr., 181.467 mph
- (6) Trevor Bayne, 181.307 mph
- (47) AJ Allmendinger, 181.248 mph
- (48) Jimmie Johnson, 181.236 mph
- (24) William Byron, 180.804 mph
- (37) Chris Buescher, 0.00 mph
- (3) Austin Dillon, 181.753 mph
- (12) Ryan Blaney, 181.550 mph
- (9) Chase Elliott, 181.082 mph
- (13) Ty Dillon, 180.293 mph
- (38) David Ragan, 180.117 mph
- (32) Matt DiBenedetto, 178.914 mph
- (23) Gray Gaulding, 0.00 mph
- (72) Cole Whitt, 177.045 mph
- (00) Jeffrey Earnhardt, 174.362 mph
- (15) Ross Chastain, 174.362
- (78) Martin Truex Jr., 0.00 mph
- (51) Harrison Rhodes, 0.00 mph