Hendrick Motorsports is back on the front row for the Daytona 500, this time with Alex Bowman and William Byron.
Bowman’s No. 48 Chevrolet was the fastest in single-car qualifying Wednesday night at 191.261 mph (47.056 seconds). It is his second Daytona 500 pole and third career pole in the NASCAR Cup Series. Bowman also became the first driver to sit on the front row for the Daytona 500 in four consecutive races.
“It doesn’t really have a lot to do with me; it’s a testament to these guys and everybody back at the shop at Hendrick Motorsports,” said Bowman. “They work so hard on these superspeedway cars. They’re beautiful when they get to the racetrack.
“Our Ally Camaro has been really fast since we unloaded, and they focused a lot on trying to get the pole for the Daytona 500. It means a lot to us, and we were able to achieve that.”
Byron wound up second fastest at 190.219 mph (47.314 seconds) in the No. 24 Chevrolet. It will be Byron’s second front row start for the Daytona 500, following on from his pole in 2019.
Hendrick Motorsports has put a driver on the Daytona 500 pole 14 times, including in five of the last six races.
While Bowman and Byron locked in their starting spots for Sunday afternoon, two other drivers guaranteed they would be in the field. Ryan Preece and David Ragan were the two fastest drivers of the open teams. Preece ran a lap of 189.135 mph, while Ragan’s lap was 188.561 mph.
The six other drivers without a charter will race for the two remaining Daytona 500 spots in the two Duel races tomorrow night.
Noah Gragson did not get to attempt a qualifying lap because his car failed inspection three times. A crew member from his Beard Motorsports team was ejected, and Gragson will also have to start at the rear of his Duel race.
Derrike Cope also did not attempt a qualifying lap. Cope, locked into the race, had a battery issue with his No. 15 Chevrolet that kept him off the track.
UP NEXT: Bluegreen Vacations Duels at 7 p.m. ET Thursday.