NASCAR Cup: qualifying cancelled at Chicagoland
By AMANDA VINCENT
After rain interfered with NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice time at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Ill., on Friday in preparation for Sunday’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400, the first race in the 10-race Chase for the Sprint Cup, NASCAR opted to cancel pole qualifying Friday evening in favor of practice time.
As a result, the starting grid for Sunday’s race was set by car owner points, mirroring the driver points standings for most, including all 16 Chase drivers. Kyle Busch and Brad Keselowski garnered front-row starting spots, with Busch credited as being the pole sitter.
“Last year, we had a really fast car at Chicago,” Busch said. “We led a lot of laps. We were up front. We kind of lost the lead late in the going, and then, we didn’t have a very good final restart and we didn’t win. We ended up seventh or something like that, but this round is a good round for us. I feel like Chicago is a strong track.”
With the Chasers being the top-16 in the points standings and the starting grid set on points at Chicagoland, the Chasers will start the race together in the front eight rows.
Only forty drivers, the exact number needed for a full Sprint Cup race field, were on the entry list for the Chicagoland race, so the cancellation of qualifying didn’t result in anyone being sent home without being able to make a qualifying attempt.
Below, is the complete starting grid for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400:
Row 1 — Kyle Busch (No. 18 Toyota), Brad Keselowski (No. 2 Ford)
Row 2 — Denny Hamlin (No. 11 Toyota), Kevin Harvick (No. 4 Chevrolet)
Row 3 — Carl Edwards (No. 19 Toyota), Martin Truex Jr. (No. 78 Toyota)
Row 4 — Matt Kenseth (No. 20 Toyota), Jimmie Johnson (No. 48 Chevrolet)
Row 5 — Joey Logano (No. 22 Ford), Kyle Larson (No. 42 Chevrolet)
Row 6 — Tony Stewart (No. 14 Chevrolet), Kurt Busch (No. 41 Chevrolet)
Row 7 — Chris Buescher (No. 34 Ford), Chasse Elliott (No. 24 Chevrolet)
Row 8 — Austin Dillon (No. 3 Chevrolet), Jamie McMurray (No. 1 Chevrolet)
Row 9 — Alex Bowman (No. 88 Chevrolet — sub for Dale Earnhardt Jr.), Ryan Newman (No. 31 Chevrolet)
Row 10 — Kasey Kahne (No. 5 Chevrolet), Trevor Bayne (No. 6 Ford)
Row 11 — A.J. Allmendinger (No. 47 Chevrolet), Ryan Blaney (No. 21 Ford)
Row 12 — Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (No. 17 Ford), Greg Biffle (No. 16 Ford)
Row 13 — Danica Patrick (No. 10 Chevrolet), Paul Menard (No. 27 Chevrolet)
Row 14 — Aric Almirola (No. 43 Ford), Clint Bowyer (No. 15 Chevrolet)
Row 15 — Casey Mears (No. 13 Chevrolet), Michael McDowell (No. 95 Chevrolet)
Row 16 — Landon Cassill (No. 38 Ford), David Ragan (No. 23 Toyota)
Row 17 — Regan Smith (No. 7 Chevrolet), Brian Scott (No. 44 Ford)
Row 18 — Matt DiBenedetto (No. 83 Toyota), Cole Whitt (No. 98 Chevrolet)
Row 19 — Michael Annett (No. 46 Chevrolet), Joey Gase (No. 32 Ford)
Row 20 — Reed Sorenson (No. 55 Chevrolet), Josh Wise (No. 30 Chevrolet)