Joey Logano, the defending champion of the NASCAR Cup Series, is set to lead the field to green for the second time this year, after blasting to the top of the speed charts in the final round of Saturday's qualifying session.
However, the most head-turning aspect of Saturday's qualifying wasn't Logano's second pole of the year, or the top-three sweep for Team Penske, but rather the complete and utter domination by Ford Performance.
The manufacturer swept the top-eight starting positions for Sunday's event, between three different organizations - Team Penske, RFK Racing, and Stewart-Haas Racing. However, when the session ended, it was the three Penske drivers at the top.
Austin Cindric will start alongside Logano in Sunday's Ambetter Health 400 at the newly reconfigured 1.5-mile oval, while Ryan Blaney will occupy the third-place spot in the starting lineup.
Brad Keselowski and Aric Almirola will start fourth and fifth, marking the highest starters for RFK Racing and Stewart-Haas Racing, respectively. Kevin Harvick, Chris Buescher, and Chase Briscoe completed a complete sweep of the top-eight for Ford.
Kyle Larson and Christopher Bell, the lone Chevrolet and Toyota drivers in the final round of qualifying on Saturday, will start from ninth and tenth. Bell, driving the No. 20 for Joe Gibbs Racing, failed to complete a lap after spinning coming to the green for his lap.
William Byron, who has captured the victory in each of the last two events in the NASCAR Cup Series, barely missed the final round of qualifying, and will have to make progress from 11th if he's hoping to capture a third straight victory.
Other notables starting further back in the field include Denny Hamlin (P14), Alex Bowman (P15), Kyle Busch (P17), Ross Chastain (P18), Josh Berry (P21), and Martin Truex, Jr. (P29).
Ty Gibbs and BJ McLeod will occupy the final row to start Sunday's race, after both drivers ran into issues on their warmup laps. Gibbs, driving the #54, scraped the outside wall, while McLeod, in the #78, spun in the middle of turns three and four.
Photo Credit: Jonathan McCoy, Courtesy of TobyChristie.com
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