Alex Bowman put the No. 48 on the pole for Sunday’s Daytona 500, becoming the first driver to start on the front row for this race four consecutive years.
Bowman claimed the pole with a lap of 191.261 mph. He won the pole for this race in 2018.
“It’s a testament to these guys and everybody back at the shop at Hendrick Motorsports,” Bowman said of Wednesday’s pole. “They work so hard on these superspeedway cars. They’re beautiful when they get to the race track. 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.”
Bowman’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate William Byron qualified second with a lap of 190.219 mph to lock in a spot in the Daytona 500.
This is the seventh time Hendrick Motorsports swept the front row for the 500. Hendrick Motorsports has won the Daytona 500 pole in six of the last seven years.
The rest of the top five was Aric Almirola (190.178 mph), Bubba Wallace (189.577) and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (189.565).
“Everything is shaping up to be a great ending for us,” Wallace said. “We’ve just got to get through it. This is kind of the same feeling I had in 2018 for my first 500 (where he finished second). The way things are going ... we’ve got to keep the positive momentum going.”
Ryan Preece and David Ragan each secured two of the spots in the Daytona 500 for non-chartered cars. The final two spots for non-chartered cars will be determined by Thursday’s qualifying races.
“My entire racing career has pretty much been full of moments like this,” Preece said. “This was like no other day to me.”
Except shortly before qualifying, Preece realized he had the wrong driver’s uniform on and had to go back and change.
“That was the most stressful thing I had going,” Preece said.
NASCAR stated that Noah Gragson’s car failed pre-qualifying inspection three times and was not allowed to make a qualifying attempt. He will start at the rear of his qualifying race. As part of the penalty for the inspection failures, a crew member was ejected.
Qualifying was delayed because of a power outage that struck about 15 minutes before the session was to have begun. The start of the session was delayed 10 minutes.