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Keselowski earns pole position for Sunday’s Cup Series throwback race at Darlington

Brad Keselowski has claimed the Busch Pole Award for Sunday’s Goodyear 400 (3:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) at Darlington Raceway.

Keselowski will start his No. 2 Team Penske Ford from the pole position for the second week in a row. He finished third last weekend at Kansas Speedway and won the race before that at Talladega Superspeedway.

RELATED: Darlington weekend schedule | 2021 Cup Series standings

John Hunter Nemechek’s No. 4 Kyle Busch Motorsports Toyota is on the pole for Friday’s LiftKits4Less.com 200 (7:30 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM) in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, and AJ Allmendinger’s No. 16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet is on the pole for Saturday’s Steakhouse Elite 200 (1 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM) in the NASCAR Xfinity Series.

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.

Start pos.
Driver Car # Team
1 Brad Keselowski 2 Team Penske
2 Kevin Harvick 4 Stewart-Haas Racing
3 Kyle Busch 18 Joe Gibbs Racing
4 Martin Truex Jr. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing
5 William Byron 24 Hendrick Motorsports
6 Chase Elliott 9 Hendrick Motorsports
7 Denny Hamlin 11 Joe Gibbs Racing
8 Matt DiBenedetto 21 Wood Brothers Racing
9 Austin Dillon 3 Richard Childress Racing
10 Tyler Reddick 8 Richard Childress Racing
11 Chris Buescher 17 Roush Fenway Racing
12 Joey Logano 22 Team Penske
13 Michael McDowell 34 Front Row Motorsports
14 Kyle Larson 5 Hendrick Motorsports
15 Daniel Suarez 99 Trackhouse Racing Team
16 Ryan Blaney 12 Team Penske
17 Kurt Busch 1 Chip Ganassi Racing
18 Ross Chastain 42 Chip Ganassi Racing
19 Alex Bowman 48 Hendrick Motorsports
20 Ryan Newman 6 Roush Fenway Racing
21 Christopher Bell 20 Joe Gibbs Racing
22 Chase Briscoe 14 Stewart-Haas Racing
23 Bubba Wallace 23 23XI Racing
24 Cole Custer 41 Stewart-Haas Racing
25 Anthony Alfredo 38 Front Row Motorsports
26 Erik Jones 43 Richard Petty Motorsports
27 Aric Almirola 10 Stewart-Haas Racing
28 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 47 JTG Daugherty Racing
29 Ryan Preece 37 JTG Daugherty Racing
30 Corey LaJoie 7 Spire Motorsports
31 Justin Haley 77 Spire Motorsports
32 BJ McLeod 78 Live Fast Motorsports
33 Cody Ware 51 Petty Ware Racing
34 JJ Yeley 53 Rick Ware Racing
35 Quin Houff 00 StarCom Racing
36 James Davison 15 Rick Ware Racing
37 Josh Bilicki 52 Rick Ware Racing

Practice and qualifying are tentatively scheduled for eight Cup Series races this year. Busch Pole Qualifying was held for the season-opening Daytona 500, and rain canceled the qualifying races for Bristol Motor Speedway’s dirt-track race. The next Cup Series event with qualifying scheduled is the May 23 debut at the Circuit of The Americas road course in Austin, Texas.