For the second time since this season amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Joey Logano will start on pole position after his name was randomly drawn to lead the field for Saturday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at Michigan International Speedway on August 8, the first of two Cup races of the weekend at the Irish Hills.
Logano, a three-time Cup Michigan winner and a two-time winner this season, is one of 10 Cup competitors to be guaranteed a spot in the 2020 Playoffs by virtue of his regular-season victories. Through the first 20 races of this year’s Cup season and his first with crew chief Paul Wolfe, he has also recorded five stage victories, five top-five results and nine top-10 results, including a fourth-place result last weekend at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Denny Hamlin, a two-time Michigan winner who finished in the runner-up spot last weekend at New Hampshire, will start on the front row alongside Logano and for the fourth time this season. Kevin Harvick, the regular-season points leader and a three-time Michigan winner, will start third alongside teammate Aric Almirola, who has started on pole position by virtue of a random draw three times this season.
Brad Keselowski, winner of last weekend’s Cup race at New Hampshire who is fresh off a one-year contract extension to remain with Team Penske and a Michigan native who has yet to win a Cup race at his home track, will start in fifth place followed by Alex Bowman, Kyle Busch, Chase Elliott, Clint Bowyer and Kurt Busch. Ryan Blaney will start 11th alongside Martin Truex Jr.
Starting in positions 13-26 are Ryan Newman, rookie Tyler Reddick, Matt DiBenedetto, rookie Cole Custer, Jimmie Johnson, Austin Dillon, William Byron, Matt Kenseth, Michael McDowell, Chris Buescher, Erik Jones, Bubba Wallace, rookie Quin Houff and J.J. Yeley.
Starting in positions 27-39 are rookie Brennan Poole, James Davison, rookie Christopher Bell, Reed Sorenson, rookie John Hunter Nemechek, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Garrett Smithley, Ty Dillon, Ryan Preece, Corey LaJoie, Daniel Suarez, Timmy Hill and Joey Gase.
The starting lineup for the second Michigan race on Sunday, August 9, will be determined based on the finishing result from Saturday, where the top-20 finishers on Saturday will be inverted for Sunday’s race while the bottom-20 finishers will start on Sunday as finished on Saturday.
The first Cup Michigan race on August 8 will occur at 4 p.m. ET on NBCSN while the second Michigan race on August 9 will occur at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.