Kevin Harvick had the draft that mattered in the final round of qualifying at Las Vegas.
His No. 4 Stewart-Haas Ford Mustang was near the back of a 12-car pack that peeled off pit road with under a minute and a half left in the final round. Harvick ended up positioned perfectly and was the quickest across the start/finish with a lap of 180.517 mph (29.914 seconds) to earn him the pole for the Pennzoil 400 – his first pole at Las Vegas.
Denny Hamlin was second quickest with a lap of 180.457 mph, while his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch will start third after a lap of 179.706 mph.
Austin Dillon, fastest in practice and in the first round of qualifying, will start fourth after clocking in at 179.509 mph.
Completing the top five was Dillon’s RCR teammate Daniel Hemric at 179.480 mph. Then came David Ragan (179.450), Kyle Larson (179.217), Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (178.607), Jimmie Johnson (178.483), and Joey Logano (177.889).
Stenhouse was the leader of the pack when the group left pit road. Alex Bowman and Chase Elliott were deemed not to have made the start/finish line before the clock expired and their second laps did not count. Bowman will start 11th and Elliott 12th.
Eliminated after the second round were Ryan Blaney (13th), Clint Bowyer (17th), Brad Keselowski (19th), and Martin Truex Jr. (23rd).
Among those eliminated after the first round of qualifying were Aric Almirola (25th), Matt DiBenedetto (26th), Kurt Busch (28th), and Ryan Newman (29th).
UP NEXT: Second practice at 11:30 a.m. ET Saturday.