NASCAR Starting Lineup for Sunday's 1000Bulbs.com 500 at Talladega Superspeedway

Hendrick Motorsports goes 1-2-3-4 as Chase Elliott seeks a Talladega sweep

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series heads to the most unpredictable racetrack of its 2019 playoffs this weekend: Talladega Superspeedway. The 2.66-mile tri-oval is one of the fastest on the circuit, breeding pack racing under a rules package that gives anyone in the field a realistic chance to win.

 

But pack racing can also lead to problems in the blink of an eye. The Big One lurks around every turn, ready to swallow half the field at a moment’s notice. You can be running up front, in the middle or at the back; these big wrecks do not discriminate.

 

That means getting as much protection as you can in the pack is important; teamwork becomes a top priority. In recent years, manufacturers and multi-car teams have worked together to give themselves their best possible chance to escape in the draft. Last fall here, Stewart-Haas Racing qualified 1-2-3-4 and went on to become a bulletproof train up front throughout the race.

 

Hendrick Motorsports hopes to follow suit. Their cars qualified 1-2-3-4 for this edition of the race, a must-win for pole-sitter Chase Elliott if he wishes to advance in the playoffs. Alex Bowman, William Byron, and Jimmie Johnson will drop in line behind him once the green flag falls.

 

40 cars showed up to compete for 40 spots on the grid. That meant no one failed to qualify for Sunday’s race.

 

1. Chase Elliott (P)

2. Alex Bowman (P)

3. William Byron (P)

4. Jimmie Johnson

5. Aric Almirola

6. Brad Keselowski

7. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

8. Clint Bowyer (P)

9. Ryan Blaney (P)

10. Joey Logano (P)

11. Erik Jones

12. Kyle Larson (P)

13. Ryan Newman

14. Paul Menard

15. Kevin Harvick (P)

16. Matt Tifft

17. David Ragan

18. Martin Truex Jr. (P)

19. Daniel Suarez

20. Austin Dillon

21. Ty Dillon

22. Michael McDowell

23. Chris Buescher

24. Kurt Busch

25. Landon Cassill (i)

26. Kyle Busch (P)

27. Bubba Wallace

28. Brendan Gaughan (i)

29. Daniel Hemric

30. Ryan Preece

31. Matt DiBenedetto

32. Parker Kligerman (i)

33. Corey Lajoie

34. Ross Chastain (i)

35. Blake Jones

36. Joey Gase (i)

37. Austin Theriault

38. Reed Sorenson

39. Spencer Boyd (i)

40. Denny Hamlin (P)

 

(i) – Ineligible to collect Cup Series points

(P) – Playoff Driver

Failed To Qualify – None

 

QUALIFYING NOTES

  • Elliott earned his eighth career pole and fourth of 2019. It’s his fifth ever pole position at the pack superspeedways of Daytona and Talladega.
  • Alex Bowman (2nd) earned his second runner-up starting spot in the past three races.
  • William Byron (3rd) had his third straight top-10 qualifying effort.
  • Jimmie Johnson (4th) hasn’t started worse than 11th during the playoffs.
  • Aric Almirola (5th) was the fastest Ford driver. He’s the defending winner of this race.
  • Erik Jones (11th) was the highest-qualifying Toyota.
  • Matt Tifft (16th) was the highest-qualifying rookie.
  • Brendan Gaughan (28th) will make his fourth and final start of the season for Beard Motorsports. The team only runs the restrictor plate events at Daytona and Talladega.
  • Parker Kligerman (32nd) is back continuing his limited schedule running the No. 96 for Gaunt Brothers Racing.
  • Blake Jones (35th) is running his first Cup race of the 2019 season in a one-race deal with Spire Motorsports.
  • Austin Theriault (37th) returns to Rick Ware Racing for his fifth Cup Series start of the season and first since Richmond Raceway last month.
  • Spencer Boyd (39th) returns to run his third Cup race of the year for Rick Ware Racing and first since Richmond last month.
  • Denny Hamlin (40th) will start dead last as the worst-performing playoff driver when the engine failed during his qualifying lap.

 

NASCAR RACE BREAKDOWN

Race: 1000Bulbs.com 500

Track: Talladega Superspeedway

Date: Sunday, Oct. 13

Time: 2 p.m. ET

TV: NBC

Radio: MRN, SIRIUS XM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 188 laps (500 miles)

Stage 1: 55 Laps

Stage 2: 55 Laps

Final Stage: 78 Laps

 

PRE-TALLADEGA NEWS

Austin Dillon runs through a disappointing 2019 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series season, one he’s tried to put out of his mind… through workout videos? He explains before Dustin Albino and Mike Neff preview Talladega Superspeedway this weekend in the Frontstretch podcast.

Event Date: 
Sunday, October 13, 2019 - 14:15
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