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September 10, 2022

Tyler Reddick soars to Busch Light Pole at Kansas

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — During Saturday’s qualifying session at Kansas Speedway, NASCAR Cup Series drivers soon migrated to the top of the track — which was fine with notorious rim rider Tyler Reddick.

The last of 10 drivers to make a qualifying run in the final round, Reddick knocked Joey Logano off the provisional pole and claimed the top starting spot for Sunday’s Hollywood Casino 400, the series’ second Playoff race (3 p.m. ET on USA, NBC Sports App, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

RELATED: Qualifying results | Weekend schedule

In the money round, Reddick toured the 1.5-mile speedway in 29.899 seconds (180.608 mph), nearly matching his lap of 29.853 seconds from the first round. Reddick was .037 seconds than faster than Logano (180.385 mph), who narrowly missed out on his second straight Playoff pole.

“It’s reassuring,” Reddick said of the pole-winning performance of his No. 8 Richard Childress Racing team. “The last few times we’ve been here, we’ve had a car capable of leading, and we’ve been able to do that. It’s just been a matter of putting together the whole day, which is something we’ve fought at time throughout the year …

“Starting first is great any weekend, but being able to have that first pit stall is going to be key.”

The Busch Light Pole Award was Reddick’s first at Kansas, his second of the season and third of his career — and his first on an oval.

Alex Bowman (180.216 mph) qualified third, followed by Christopher Bell (179.659 mph) and Ross Chastain (179.605 mph). Bubba Wallace, Kyle Larson, Austin Cindric, William Byron and Chris Buescher claimed grid positions six through 10, respectively.

Reddick won two NASCAR Xfinity Series championships running the wall at Homestead-Miami Speedway. That’s also where he expects to find speed on Sunday at Kansas.

“It certainly will be for large amounts of this race,” Reddick said. “I think it has the potential under green-flag cycle to move around off of that wall. The fastest car here in the spring was Kurt Busch, and he was able to really do a good job of running on the top seam.

“It’s going to lay rubber with 30-plus cars out there all running in the majority of the same area of the race track. So I think it’s going to open up that opportunity for other lanes to come into play because there will be less rubber on it.”

The 36 drivers were split into two groups for practice and qualifying, and the top five from each bracket reached the final round to go for the pole. Bell was fastest in Group A’s time trials, and Reddick was best in Group B.

Reddick also tops Cup Series practice

Tyler Reddick posted the fastest overall speed in NASCAR Cup Series practice, topping the chart during Saturday’s warm-up session at Kansas Speedway.

Reddick clocked a lap of 178.903 mph at the 1.5-mile track, moving the No. 8 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet to the top of the speed chart. He was also fastest in the consecutive 10-lap averages category.

MORE: At-track photos: Kansas

Ross Chastain was second-fastest in No. 1 Trackhouse Racing Chevy at 178.418 mph. Christopher Bell led the Group A session and was third-fastest overall (178.412) in the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.

Ricky Stenhouse Jr. scraped the wall with his JTG Daugherty Racing entry, but the damage was not enough to keep the No. 47 Chevrolet from participating in Busch Light Pole Qualifying.

Aric Almirola was last in the 36-car field, and he told NBC Sports that his Stewart-Haas Racing crew was looking into engine issues under the hood of the No. 10 Ford. Almirola did not qualify and is scheduled to start last in Sunday’s 400-miler.

Staff contributed to this report.