Kyle Larson earned the Busch Pole Award for Saturday’s Federated Auto Parts 400 Salute to First Responders (7:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN/NBC Sports App, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs’ Round of 16 middle race at Richmond Raceway.
Larson will start his No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet from the first spot for the second time this season, in search of his second Richmond victory.
Austin Cindric claimed the pole for Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series Go Bowling 250 (2:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN/NBC Sports App, MRN and SiriusXM) in the No. 22 Team Penske Ford.
The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, meanwhile, is off this weekend.
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 Saturday night’s Cup Series race below.
|1||Kyle Larson||5||Hendrick Motorsports|
|2||Denny Hamlin||11||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|3||Martin Truex Jr.||19||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|4||Kurt Busch||1||Chip Ganassi Racing|
|5||Kevin Harvick||4||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|6||Joey Logano||22||Team Penske|
|7||Brad Keselowski||2||Team Penske|
|8||Ryan Blaney||12||Team Penske|
|9||Aric Almirola||10||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|10||Christopher Bell||20||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|11||Tyler Reddick||8||Richard Childress Racing|
|12||Alex Bowman||48||Hendrick Motorsports|
|13||Chase Elliott||9||Hendrick Motorsports|
|14||William Byron||24||Hendrick Motorsports|
|15||Kyle Busch||18||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|16||Michael McDowell||34||Front Row Motorsports|
|17||Ross Chastain||42||Chip Ganassi Racing|
|18||Chris Buescher||17||Roush Fenway Racing|
|19||Austin Dillon||3||Richard Childress Racing|
|20||Ryan Preece||37||JTG Daugherty Racing|
|21||Cole Custer||41||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|22||Daniel Suarez||99||TrackHouse Racing|
|23||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||47||JTG Daugherty Racing|
|24||Ryan Newman||6||Roush Fenway Racing|
|25||Corey LaJoie||7||Spire Motorsports|
|26||Chase Briscoe||14||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|27||Bubba Wallace||23||23XI Racing|
|28||Matt DiBenedetto||21||Wood Brothers Racing|
|29||Justin Haley||77||Spire Motorsports|
|30||Anthony Alfredo||38||Front Row Motorsports|
|31||Erik Jones||43||Richard Petty Motorsports|
|32||BJ McLeod||78||Live Fast Motorsports|
|33||Josh Bilicki||52||Rick Ware Racing|
|34||Joey Gase||15||Rick Ware Racing|
|35||Quin Houff||00||StarCom Racing|
|36||Garrett Smithley||51||Petty Ware Racing|
|37||JJ Yeley||53||Rick Ware 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.