Kyle Larson has secured the Busch Pole Award for Sunday’s South Point 400 (7 p.m. ET on NBCSN/NBC Sports App, PRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
Larson — winner of the most recent NASCAR Cup Series event, at Bristol Motor Speedway — will start his No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet from the first spot for the fourth time in the last six races. The 400-miler is the opening race in the NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs’ Round of 12.
Austin Cindric claimed the pole for Saturday’s NASCAR Xfinity Series Alsco Uniforms 302 (7:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN/NBC Sports App, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), the opening race in that circuit’s postseason. John Hunter Nemechek earned the No. 1 starting spot for Friday’s Victoria’s Voice Foundation 200 presented by Westgate Resorts (9 p.m. ET, FS1, MRN, SiriusXM) for the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Playoffs Round of 8 opener.
Larson, Cindric and Nemechek are all the current points leaders in their respective 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 Saturday night’s Cup Series race below.
|1||Kyle Larson||5||Hendrick Motorsports|
|2||Ryan Blaney||12||Team Penske|
|3||William Byron||24||Hendrick Motorsports|
|4||Martin Truex Jr.||19||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|5||Kevin Harvick||4||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|6||Denny Hamlin||11||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|7||Alex Bowman||48||Hendrick Motorsports|
|8||Brad Keselowski||2||Team Penske|
|9||Joey Logano||22||Team Penske|
|10||Kyle Busch||18||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|11||Chase Elliott||9||Hendrick Motorsports|
|12||Christopher Bell||20||Joe Gibbs Racing|
|13||Tyler Reddick||8||Richard Childress Racing|
|14||Matt DiBenedetto||21||Wood Brothers Racing|
|15||Austin Dillon||3||Richard Childress Racing|
|16||Erik Jones||43||Richard Petty Motorsports|
|17||Aric Almirola||10||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|18||Ross Chastain||42||Chip Ganassi Racing|
|19||Chase Briscoe||14||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|20||Kurt Busch||1||Chip Ganassi Racing|
|21||Bubba Wallace||23||23XI Racing|
|22||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||47||JTG Daugherty Racing|
|23||Michael McDowell||34||Front Row Motorsports|
|24||Ryan Preece||37||JTG Daugherty Racing|
|25||Chris Buescher||17||Roush Fenway Racing|
|26||Daniel Suarez||99||Trackhouse Racing|
|27||Corey LaJoie||7||Spire Motorsports|
|28||Cole Custer||41||Stewart-Haas Racing|
|29||Ryan Newman||6||Roush Fenway Racing|
|30||Garrett Smithley||53||Rick Ware Racing|
|31||Josh Bilicki||52||Rick Ware Racing|
|32||Anthony Alfredo||38||Front Row Motorsports|
|33||Justin Haley||77||Spire Motorsports|
|34||BJ McLeod||78||Live Fast Motorsports|
|35||Cody Ware||51||Petty Ware Racing|
|36||Quin Houff||00||StarCom Racing|
|37||Joey Gase||15||Rick Ware Racing|
|38||JJ Yeley||66||Motorsports Business Management|
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.