NASCAR Starting Lineup for Sunday's AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway

Kevin Harvick earns his series-best sixth pole of the season

Texas Motor Speedway is the site of the 34th Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race of the 2019 season. Only two races remain before the stage is set for Homestead-Miami Speedway's playoff finale. Seven postseason drivers are battling for three spots after Martin Truex Jr. clinched a place in the 2019 Championship 4 with his victory at Martinsville Speedway.

 

This group will compete on the 1.5-mile oval down in Fort Worth, using NASCAR's new 2019 handling package on this track a second time. This intermediate is difficult to pass on but the speedway has been aggressive on widening its grooves. A traction compound was added earlier this year to increase grip on the track and produce more side-by-side racing during long green-flag runs.

 

Kevin Harvick has won the last two fall races at this track and is looking to make it three in a row. He earned the pole for Sunday's race, his series-high sixth of the season after his Stewart-Haas Racing organization led both of Friday's practice sessions with Clint Bowyer and Aric Almirola.

 

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

 

1. Kevin Harvick (P)

2. Erik Jones

3. Denny Hamlin (P)

4. Kurt Busch

5. Alex Bowman

6. Aric Almirola

7. Daniel Suarez

8. Brad Keselowski

9. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

10. Matt DiBenedetto

11. Joey Logano (P)

12. Kyle Busch (P)

13. Kyle Larson (P)

14. Chase Elliott (P)

15. Ryan Blaney (P)

16. Daniel Hemric

17. Martin Truex Jr. (P)

18. William Byron

19. Ty Dillon

20. Chris Buescher

21. Austin Dillon

22. Bubba Wallace

23. Jimmie Johnson

24. Clint Bowyer

25. Ryan Newman

26. David Ragan

27. Michael McDowell

28. Ryan Preece

29. John Hunter Nemechek (i)

30. Parker Kligerman (i)

31. Paul Menard

32. Landon Cassill (i)

33. Corey Lajoie

34. JJ Yeley (i)

35. Ross Chastain (i)

36. Garrett Smithley (i)

37. Quin Houff

38. Joe Nemechek (i)

39. Josh Bilicki (i)

40. Timmy Hill (i)

 

(i) - Ineligible to collect Cup Series points

(P) - Playoff Driver

Failed To Qualify - None

 

QUALIFYING NOTES

  • Kevin Harvick (1st) now has six top-3 qualifying results in the last seven Cup races at Texas Motor Speedway. He was one of just two playoff drivers to qualify inside the top 10, the smallest total during this postseason.
  • Erik Jones (2nd) was the fastest Toyota. It’s his best qualifying run since winning the pole at Las Vegas in September 2018.
  • Denny Hamlin (3rd) has his first back-to-back top-5 qualifying efforts since Las Vegas and Phoenix back in March.
  • Kurt Busch (4th) was the fastest Chevrolet on a day he announced a multi-year deal to continue racing the No. 1 car for Chip Ganassi.
  • Matt DiBenedetto (10th) has his best starting spot since the Bristol night race in August.
  • Daniel Hemric (16th) was the highest-qualifying rookie.
  • Martin Truex Jr. (17th) qualified the worst of all the playoff drivers.
  • John Hunter Nemechek (29th) is making his Cup Series debut in the No. 36 of Front Row Motorsports. Nemechek replaces Matt Tifft, sidelined for potentially six months after suffering a seizure last weekend at Martinsville Speedway.
  • Parker Kligerman (30th) returns to the track this week with the Gaunt Brothers Racing Toyota. It’s the team’s 14th race of 2019.
  • Quin Houff (37th) moves back to Spire Motorsports this week to run their No. 77 unsponsored Chevrolet. Houff has been bouncing around between Spire and Premium Motorsports.
  • Joe Nemechek (38th) returns to Premium Motorsports and will drive alongside his son in his Cup debut. It’s his fifth Cup start of the year, his most since 2014.
  • Josh Bilicki (39th) returns to the Rick Ware Racing stable this week to make his ninth Cup start of 2019.
  • Timmy Hill (40th) moves back into the Carl Long Racing/MBM car this week after running for Spire Motorsports at Martinsville.

 

NASCAR RACE BREAKDOWN

Race: AAA Texas 500

Track: Texas Motor Speedway (Fort Worth, Texas)

Date: Sunday, Nov. 3

Time: 3 p.m. ET

TV: NBCSN

Radio: PRN, SIRIUS XM NASCAR Radio

Distance: 334 laps (500 miles)

Stage 1: 85 Laps

Stage 2: 85 Laps

Final Stage: 164 Laps

 

PRE-TEXAS NEWS

Bubba Wallace stops by to break down his recent success at Richard Petty Motorsports before Mike Neff and Dustin Albino preview this weekend’s NASCAR racing at Texas in the Frontstretch podcast.

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