Saturday, June 3, 2023

Ryan Preece Scores First NASCAR Cup Series Pole with Blistering Lap at Martinsville

Ryan Preece has scored the pole position for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series event at Martinsville Speedway, his first in the top division of NASCAR. PC: Christopher Fisher |

The first nine drivers that took time in the final round of Saturday’s NASCAR Cup Series qualifying session at Martinsville were a tight-knit bunch, running within eight-hundredths of a second.

Of course, that was until Ryan Preece, driving the No. 41 for Stewart-Haas Racing, brought his Ford Mustang around the half-mile paperclip in 19.979 seconds, more than a tenth quicker than anybody else.

It’s the first NASCAR Cup Series pole position for Ryan Preece, who recently joined Stewart-Haas Racing for his first full-season driving the No. 41 Ford Mustang for Stewart-Haas Racing.

By virtue of a tiebreaker, which was based on NASCAR Cup Series owner points, Daniel Suarez will start on the outside of the front row for Sunday’s 400-lap contest, after posting a time identical to that of Aric Almirola, who will start third.

Chase Briscoe, a teammate to Preece and Almirola at Stewart-Haas Racing, will start on the outside of the second row in fourth, while Martin Truex, Jr. overcame a dismal practice session to round out the top five.

Tyler Reddick, Kevin Harvick, William Byron, Bubba Wallace, and Chris Buescher completed the top-10 and the drivers who advanced to the final round of qualifications.

Of the drivers that failed to advance to the second round of qualifying, Denny Hamlin was the quickest, posting a lap of 20.227 seconds, a lap which would have locked him into the top five if he was in Group A.

Other notables include Joey Logano in 15th, Kyle Busch in 17th, Kyle Larson in 19th, Christopher Bell in 22nd, Alex Bowman in 23rd, Chase Elliott – making his return to NASCAR Cup Series competition after six weeks off – in 24th, and Ryan Blaney in 31st.

Joseph Srigley
Joseph Srigley
University of Windsor | Business Administration - Supply Chain & Data Analytics Editor at

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