CONCORD, N.C. – William Byron will start Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at the Charlotte Motor Speedway ROVAL as the highest running driver from Hendrick Motorsports.
With a lap time of 1:20.852 seconds, Byron earned the second starting position for tomorrow’s main event. He was also the third-quickest driver in practice, .077 seconds behind the fastest lap of the session.
Chase Elliott advanced into the final round of qualifying as well. For tomorrow’s race, Elliott will roll off the grid in the ninth spot. The driver of the No. 9 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 is already locked into the Round of 8 and will look to build momentum before heading to Las Vegas Motor Speedway next weekend.
Kyle Larson qualified in the 18th position while Noah Gragson ended the session in the 29th spot. Gragson returns for the second straight race to pilot the No. 48 Ally Racing Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 while Alex Bowman recovers from concussion-like symptoms following an accident at Texas Motor Speedway.
Joey Logano grabbed the pole position for Sunday’s race.
Coming off a victory at Talladega Superspeedway, Elliott has locked himself into the Round of 8 of the 2022 playoffs. As for his teammate Larson, the 30-year-old driver will have an 18-point lead over the final transfer position when the green flag drops on Sunday afternoon.
Following an appeal, Byron’s 25-point penalty from the Texas Motor Speedway event was rescinded and he now enters seventh in points, 14 markers above the cutline. The Charlotte, North Carolina, native has had success at this track before as he paced the field for 30 laps in last year’s event. Gragson became the 48th driver in Cup Series history to make a start for Hendrick Motorsports last weekend at Talladega. Sunday’s main event will be his first start at a road course for Rick Hendrick's organization.
In its brief history as a stop on the Cup Series schedule, Hendrick Motorsports has thrived on the 17-turn circuit. In the four races the Charlotte ROVAL configuration has been used, Hendrick Motorsports has visited victory lane three times, leading 35% of the laps. Elliott is responsible for two of the victories, winning in both 2019 and 2020. Larson is the most recent winner from the organization, taking the checkered flag last season on his way to the 2021 Cup Series championship.
Catch the 109-lap main event at 2 p.m. ET this Sunday on NBC, PRN Radio, and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio (Channel 90).