Denny Hamlin earned the Busch Pole Award for Sunday’s YellaWood 500 at Talladega Superspeedway (2 p.m. ET on NBC/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).
Hamlin, locked into the Round of 8 of the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs after last Sunday’s victory at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, will start on pole for the fourth time in 2021 in the No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.
Justin Allgaier will start on pole in the No. 7 JR Motorsports Chevrolet for Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series Sparks 300 at Talladega (4:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), the second race in the Xfinity Series Playoffs’ Round of 12.
Ben Rhodes earned the top starting spot for Saturday’s Chevrolet Silverado 250 at Talladega (1 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM) for the second race of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs’ Round of 8.
As NASCAR adapted to COVID-19 protocols last season, practice and qualifying were eliminated at a majority of national-series events to limit at-track time, exposure and to cut race weekend costs. To determine starting lineups, competition officials used grouped draws, added inversions for weekend doubleheaders, and eventually adopted a performance-metrics formula. That metrics format remains in place this season, drawing on performance from both individual races and season-long results.
NASCAR’s metrics formula for 2021 weighs:
- 25 percent: Driver’s finishing position from the previous race
- 25 percent: Car owner’s finishing position from the previous race
- 35 percent: Team owner points ranking
- 15 percent: Fastest lap from the previous race
See the full lineup for Sunday’s Cup Series race below.
|1||Denny Hamlin||11||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|2||Kyle Busch||18||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|3||Chase Elliott||9||Hendrick Motorsports|
|4||Ryan Blaney||12||Team Penske|
|5||Kyle Larson||5||Hendrick Motorsports|
|6||Martin Truex Jr.||19||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|7||Brad Keselowski||2||Team Penske|
|8||Joey Logano||22||Team Penske|
|9||Kevin Harvick||4||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|10||William Byron||24||Hendrick Motorsports|
|11||Alex Bowman||48||Hendrick Motorsports|
|12||Christopher Bell||20||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|13||Tyler Reddick||8||Richard Childress Racing|
|14||Kurt Busch||1||Chip Ganassi Racing|
|15||Matt DiBenedetto||21||Wood Brothers Racing|
|16||Austin Dillon||3||Richard Childress Racing|
|17||Chase Briscoe||14||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|18||Daniel Suárez||99||Trackhouse Racing|
|19||Bubba Wallace||23||23XI Racing|
|20||Aric Almirola||10||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|21||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||47||JTG Daugherty Racing|
|22||Michael McDowell||34||Front Row Motorsports|
|23||Ross Chastain||42||Chip Ganassi Racing|
|24||Chris Buescher||17||Roush Fenway Racing|
|25||Ryan Newman||6||Roush Fenway Racing|
|26||Erik Jones||43||Richard Petty Motorsports|
|27||Ryan Preece||37||JTG Daugherty Racing|
|28||Cole Custer||41||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|29||Corey LaJoie||7||Spire Motorsports|
|30||Anthony Alfredo||38||Front Row Motorsports|
|31||Cody Ware||51||Petty Ware Racing|
|32||BJ McLeod||78||Live Fast Motorsports|
|33||Justin Allgaier||77||Spire Motorsports|
|34||Josh Bilicki||52||Rick Ware Racing|
|35||Quin Houff||00||StarCom Racing|
|36||Joey Gase||53||Rick Ware Racing|
|37||Garrett Smithley||15||Rick Ware Racing|
|38||Justin Haley||16||Kaulig Racing|
|39||James Davison||66||Motorsports Business Management|
|40||Landon Cassill||96||Gaunt Brothers Racing|
Practice and qualifying are tentatively scheduled for eight Cup Series races this year. Just one race remains with Busch Pole Qualifying on the schedule — the season-ending championship race Nov. 7 at Phoenix Raceway.