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Chase Briscoe tops field at Gateway to win first career Cup pole

MADISON, Ill. -- Chase Briscoe scored his first career Cup pole Saturday at World Wide Technology Raceway at Gateway.

The Stewart-Haas Racing driver is the fifth different driver to win their first career Cup pole this season, joining Austin Cindric (Auto Club), Christopher Bell (Las Vegas), Cole Custer (Bristol Dirt) and Chris Buescher (Dover). This is the first Cup season since 2001 with at least five first-time pole winners.

MORE: Gateway Cup qualifying results

Briscoe won the pole with a lap of 138.274 mph. He will be joined on the front row by Cindric (137.775 mph). Bell (137.560) starts third. Tyler Reddick (137.514) qualified fourth. Ryan Blaney (137.468) completed the top five. Denny Hamlin, who won last weekend’s Coca-Cola 600, qualified sixth after a lap of 137.363 mph.

“It’s really special to lead the field to the green in front of a sold-out crowd here,” Briscoe said.

Zane Smith qualified 32nd for his Cup debut. He’s filling in for Chris Buescher at RFK Racing this weekend. Buescher is out because he tested positive for COVID-19 this week.

The cars of Parker Kligerman and AJ Allmendinger did not make qualifying attempts. Kligerman’s Rick Ware Racing team went to a backup after an electrical fire in the car during Friday’s practice. Kaulig Racing repaired Allmendinger’s car after Ben Rhodes crashed in practice Friday. Rhodes was in the car because Allmendinger is competing in Saturday’s Xfinity Series race at Portland International Raceway.

The Cup race is scheduled to take the green flag at 3:42 p.m. ET.