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Ryan Blaney wins Cup pole at Circuit of the Americas

AJ Allmendinger predicts faster lap times this year compared to when NASCAR raced at Circuit of the Americas last season, largely due to the bigger brakes on the next gen setup, and takes questions from fans.

Ryan Blaney has won pole position for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Circuit of the Americas.

Blaney’s lap of 2 minutes, 12.343 seconds around the 3.41-mile road course was fastest among the 10 drivers that made the final round of Saturday’s qualifying.

NASCAR Cup Series at COTA - Starting Lineup

NASCAR Cup Series at COTA - Qualifying Results

The pole comes after Blaney spun in the morning practice session at Turn 10. Despite going through the gravel trap and into the tire barrier, Blaney’s No. 12 Team Penske Ford escaped serious damage in the incident.

“I wouldn’t have thought that we’d sit on the pole after I hit the fence,” Blaney told Fox Sports after earning his second pole of the season (Phoenix). “I appreciate the fast car, number one, and I appreciate the soft wall that was over there and these resilient race cars.

”.... I wouldn’t say I’m the best road course racer. I kind of struggle and always look to find speed. It was cool that we had it today in qualifying, so hopefully, that carries over to tomorrow. ... It’s a pretty good surprise after practice, so, good job to everybody.”

Joining him on the front row is Trackhouse’s Daniel Suarez, who post his best final-round lap at 2 minutes, 12.369 seconds.

His second-place starting position is the best for the two-year-old Trackhouse organization, which scored top-five finishes from both Suarez (fourth) and Ross Chastain (second) last week at Atlanta Motor Speedway behind winner William Byron.

Row 2 features Stewart-Haas Racing’s Cole Custer (2:12.471) and Richard Childress Racing’s Tyler Reddick (2:12.552).

Behind them in Row 3 will be Hendrick Motorsports’ Alex Bowman (2:12.656) and Team Penske’s Joey Logano (2:12.892).

Andy Lally was not allowed to qualify the No. 78 Live Fast Motorsports Ford after said entry failed inspection three times Saturday.

Sunday’s EchoPark Automotive Texas Grand Prix is scheduled to go green at 3:49 p.m. ET.