Wednesday, May 25, 2022

NASCAR Cup Series at Talladega starting lineup: Christoper Bell wins second pole of 2022

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Christopher Bell won the pole for the GEICO 500 at Talladega on Saturday morning, topping a time-trial session that saw two Joe Gibbs Racing Toyotas sweep the front row and break a recent trend of Chevrolet dominance in superspeedway qualifying.

Bell posted a lap of 52.927 seconds (180.928 MPH) in the second round of qualifying, beating Martin Truex Jr. for the top spot and earning both his second pole of the season and career. Bell’s first pole of the year came at Las Vegas in March.

Bell’s Toyota is the first non-Chevrolet to win a pole at a superspeedway since Kurt Busch won the pole at Talladega in the fall of 2018 driving a Stewart-Haas Racing Ford. Daniel Hemric was the fastest Chevrolet in third, while Joey Logano led the Ford qualifiers in 13th.

Bell is the second repeat pole-sitter of 2022, and his two poles now rank second on the season to Ryan Blaney’s three.

Three drivers encountered issues in pre-qualifying tech inspection: Truex and Ricky Stenhouse Jr.’s teams failed inspection twice, resulting in them losing pit selection and having one crew member ejected from the weekend. Landon Cassill’s team failed inspection three times, leading to his team being disallowed from making a qualifying attempt. Cassill will start last on Sunday and will have to serve a drive-through penalty following the green flag.

GEICO 500 starting lineup

  1. #20 – Christopher Bell
  2. #19 – Martin Truex Jr.
  3. #16 – Daniel Hemric
  4. #99 – Daniel Suarez
  5. #5 – Kyle Larson
  6. #45 – Kurt Busch
  7. #11 – Denny Hamlin
  8. #24 – William Byron
  9. #23 – Bubba Wallace
  10. #8 – Tyler Reddick
  11. #31 – Justin Haley
  12. #18 – Kyle Busch
  13. #22 – Joey Logano
  14. #3 – Austin Dillon
  15. #6 – Brad Keselowski
  16. #43 – Erik Jones
  17. #14 – Chase Briscoe
  18. #2 – Austin Cindric (R)
  19. #1 – Ross Chastain
  20. #42 – Ty Dillon
  21. #34 – Michael McDowell
  22. #12 – Ryan Blaney
  23. #10 – Aric Almirola
  24. #4 – Kevin Harvick
  25. #21 – Harrison Burton (R)
  26. #47 – Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
  27. #48 – Alex Bowman
  28. #9 – Chase Elliott
  29. #41 – Cole Custer
  30. #17 – Chris Buescher
  31. #62 – Noah Gragson
  32. #38 – Todd Gilliland (R)
  33. #7 – Corey LaJoie
  34. #51 – Cody Ware
  35. #44 – Greg Biffle
  36. #15 – David Ragan
  37. #78 – B.J. McLeod
  38. #55 – J.J. Yeley
  39. #77 – Landon Cassill

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