On a track similar to the one that gave him his first NASCAR Cup Series victory, Chase Briscoe achieved another career first—a Cup Series pole position.
In the final round of time trials on Saturday, Briscoe sped around 1.25-mile World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway in 32.544 seconds (138.274 mph) to earn the top starting position for Sunday’s inaugural Enjoy Illinois 300 (3:30 p.m. ET on FS1, MRN and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).
Even though he had a slight bobble on his money lap, Briscoe was fast enough to beat fellow Ford driver Austin Cindric (137.775 mph) by .118 seconds.
“It’s funny,” said Briscoe, who won his first race earlier this season at Phoenix Raceway. “The first round, I felt I underdrove extremely bad, and the second round I overdrove… I got really loose getting into (Turn) 3, and I felt like I probably gave away what advantage I had through (Turns) 1 and 2…
“We were obviously really good at Phoenix, and I have a really close package to that. We’ll see if we can have the same result as Phoenix. Obviously, I’ve got the best starting spot for that, and looking forward to tomorrow, for sure.”
Briscoe is the fifth driver to earn a first career pole this season.
Christopher Bell qualified third at 137.560 mph, followed by Tyler Reddick (137.514 mph) and Ryan Blaney (137.468 mph).
Denny Hamlin, Joey Logano, Aric Almirola, Harrison Burton and Ross Chastain will start from positions six through 10, respectively, after advancing to the final round of qualifying.
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