Race Weekend Central

Chase Elliott on Pole for Cup Championship Race at Phoenix

Chase Elliott will lead the NASCAR Cup Series field to green in the race for the championship at Phoenix Raceway.

The No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports driver earned the pole after winning last week’s event at Martinsville Speedway.

March’s Phoenix victor Joey Logano will start next to Elliott on the front row, while his Team Penske cohort Brad Keselowski lines up third. Denny Hamlin, the last of the championship contenders, starts fourth, while Ryan Blaney rounds out the top five starters.

Alex Bowman begins sixth, while Busch brothers Kurt and Kyle are seventh and eighth. Stewart-Haas Racing teammates Clint Bowyer and Aric Almirola complete the top 10 in the lineup.

The lineup was formed using an equation combining four statistical categories: rank in owner points (35%), driver’s finishing position (25%), owner’s finishing position (25%) and fastest lap from previous race (15%).

Cup Starting Lineup for Phoenix

The Season Finale 500 airs on Sunday, Nov. 8 at 3 p.m. ET on NBC.

About the author

Joy joined Frontstretch in 2019 as a NASCAR DraftKings writer, expanding to news and iRacing coverage in 2020. She's currently an assistant editor and involved with photos, social media and news editing. A California native, Joy was raised as a motorsports fan and started watching NASCAR extensively in 2001. She earned her B.A. degree in Liberal Studies at California State University Bakersfield in 2010.

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Nascar really wants chase Elliott to win the championship.

WJW Motorsports

You bet they do – and for good reason ($$). I’d also say the vast majority of fans (who are not Kes, Logano, or Denny fans) do as well.

Carl D.

There’s really no reason not to like the guy. He appears to be talented and humble (like his dad), and he hasn’t made any real enemies on the track. And he’s the son of a popular Hall of Fame driver.


I like the guy. He’s a very good driver.


The rules for determining the starting lineup have been in effect throughout the Playoffs. It’s based on driver points, owner points, previous race win and fastest lap. Elliott is tied for first in driver points, 2nd in owner points, won the previous race and had the fastest lap. It’s simple math. Why does everybody on this site have so much trouble understanding simple rules? The rules weren’t made to favor any one particular driver.

WJW Motorsports

I think NASCAR would go a long way to establish legitimacy if they would actually publicly disclose the rulebook at the beginning of each season. Since they refuse to do this, it increases distrust and fosters conspiracy theory. Many would not have decided rescinding the pit-stop penalty was playing favorites if they were familiar with the rule (or could go look it up themselves). But I’d say declaring “everybody” unable to read and comprehend might be a bit of an overstatement. And while the current qual rules don’t favor any “one” driver, they certainly favor a small group of drivers and lessen the legitimacy of the race. Simple – either qualify on track, or random selection for the whole field.. (or get rid of all other cars not in the “playoffs”). Why on earth would a sponsor want to pay for any of the last 10 races knowing that their car had no chance to compete fairly or even be shown or discussed on TV if they are no longer in the “playoffs”? Really, really, really dumb business model.


Awww. jo jo. isn’t georgia great.


Wow you didn’t pick Kevin this week. Yearly total 2nd.


Elliott “inherits” the pole since he is the heir apparent.

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