When visiting Darlington Raceway earlier this year, Joey Logano was able to sit on the pole, lead the most laps in the race, and take home the victory, albeit in dramatic fashion.
Now, as the series returns to the 1.366-mile oval for the first race of the 2022 NASCAR Cup Series Playoffs, the Team Penske driver is looking to duplicate the stranglehold he had over the field in May.
With a time of 29.181 seconds (168.521mph) in the second round of Saturday’s single-car qualifying session, the 32-year-old captured his second pole of the season and the 32nd of his NASCAR Cup Series career.
Christopher Bell took the second spot in the final round of qualifying, just nine one-thousandths of a second slower than Logano’s pole-winning time. For Bell, Darlington marks his sixth front row start of the season.
William Byron will start Sunday’s 500-mile contest from Darlington Raceway in third place, marking his best start since Richmond in April, 20 races ago. Tyler Reddick and Kyle Busch each recorded top-five starts, as well.
Austin Cindric, Kyle Larson, Bubba Wallace (45), Ryan Blaney, and Michael McDowell completed the top-10 in the final round of qualifying on Saturday.
Denny Hamlin (P11), Ross Chastain (P12), Austin Dillon (P13), Alex Bowman (P16), Kevin Harvick (P18), Chase Briscoe (P19), Chase Elliott (P23), and Daniel Suarez (P36) were the eight NASCAR Cup Series Playoff drivers that failed to advance to the second round.