The pole for the NASCAR Xfinity Series race at Auto Club Speedway on Saturday evening has been won by AJ Allmendinger.
In the No. 16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet, Allmendinger qualified second-to-last and set a lap time of 179.829 miles per hour.
Saturday’s contest will be his first in a NASCAR national series since the 2018 Cup Series race at Auto Club.
“I was hoping they were gonna tell me it was pretty good, because I didn’t really have much left in it,” Allmendinger told Fox Sports about his lap. “I was like, ‘Oh, please, let me cross the line and then tell me at least it’s a decent lap.’
“(The car) is pretty dialed in. We were a little bit tight in practice. (Crew chief) Bruce (Schlicker) did a great job making the adjustments going into qualifying. These qualifying (sessions) make me a little nervous again, because I actually haven’t done a lot of them in the Xfinity Series at tracks like this, so, good start to the day. We’ve got a long race ahead of us. But at least we get to lead the field.”
Cole Custer, a Cup regular, will begin on the outside first row. For long of the practise, his run of 179.793 mph in the No. 07 SS Green Light Racing Ford was temporary pole, but Allmendinger stole it away.
Brandon Jones (179.677 mph) and part-timer Trevor Bayne are in row 2 for Joe Gibbs Racing (179.582 mph). This weekend, Bayne will begin a seven-race schedule in JGR’s No. 18 Toyota.
Daniel Hemric (178.620 mph) and Noah Gragson (178.554 mph) are in Row 3 of the Xfinity Series.
Austin Hill (177.061 mph) qualified on the outside of Row 4 after winning at Daytona last week. He’ll be on the same row as Landon Cassill (177.927 mph).
Joe Graf Jr., Will Rodgers, and Brennan Poole were the three drivers that unable to qualify for the 38-car field. Graf would, though, replaced Timmy Hill in the No. 38 RSS Racing Ford for the race, according to NASCAR.
Under a new structure introduced by NASCAR last November, Xfinity practise and qualifying were held in the same session.
A 20-minute practise session (for all entries) preceded single-car, single-lap qualifying for Auto Club (all entries). In that practise, Justin Allgaier was the fastest, although he only qualified 20th (175.165 mph).
The Production Alliance Group 300 will be given the green flag at 5:17 p.m. ET. On FS1, there is coverage.
Several face masks inspired by NASCAR racing drivers are currently available at the following websites for a reasonable price:
Hendrick Motorsports, IndyCar, AJ Allmendinger, Nascar, Nascar Cup Series, Xfinity