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Alex Bowman wins pole at Daytona 500, teammate William Byron joins on front row

Bowman smoked the field, one of two Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolets that will take the green flag on the front row at the 2021 Daytona 500.

Thursday update: Follow along for Duel 1 and Duel 2 results to set Daytona 500 starting lineup

UPDATE: 8:40 p.m. Alex Bowman smoked the field with a time of 47.056 for a hot lap of 191.26 miles per hour to win the pole at the 2021 Daytona 500.

No other racer was within a quarter-second of the Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet sponsored by Ally Bank. His teammate William Byron finished second at 190.22 MPH, so the front row of the Great American Race will be two Chevys.

The fastest Ford belonged to Aric Almirola, who finished third and will have the pole for the first Duel race on Thursday night.


The Daytona 500 kicks off with pole qualifying on Wednesday night from Daytona International Speedway.

44 drivers will take a hot lap, and the top two will be in the pole position and the outside of Row 1 for The Great American Race. The rest will end up in the Duel races tomorrow night of 50 laps each that will set the order for the rest of the field.

Only 40 racers will make the main field, and 36 of them have guaranteed spots even if they wipe out tonight and hit the wall thanks to the charter system implemented by NASCAR. That means eight non-chartered drivers are competing for four spots in the field. Who gets those spots, and who ends up on the pole for the big race on Valentine’s Day afternoon, are the stories we’ll be following.

Here is the order of drivers for pole qualifying at the Daytona 500

* non-chartered driver now qualified for Daytona 500 field

2021 Daytona 500 pole qualifying results

Order Driver/ Car # Team Manufacturer Time
Order Driver/ Car # Team Manufacturer Time
1 Alex Bowman #48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 47.056
2 William Byron #24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 47.314
3 Aric Almirola #10 Stewart Ford 47.324
4 Bubba Wallace #23 23XI Racing Toyota 47.474
5 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. #47 JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 47.477
6 Kevin Harvick #4 Stewart Ford 47.489
7 Christopher Bell #20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 47.573
8 Ryan Preece #37* JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet 47.585
9 Austin Dillon #3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 47.631
10 Daniel Suarez #99 Trackhouse Racing Team Chevrolet 47.636
11 Denny Hamlin #11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 47.695
12 Chase Elliott #9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 47.695
13 David Ragan #36* Front Row Motorsports Ford 47.730
14 Kurt Busch #1 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 47.742
15 Kyle Larson #5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet 47.752
16 Kyle Busch #18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 47.780
17 Matt DiBenedetto #21 Wood Brothers Racing Ford 47.881
18 Ryan Blaney #12 Team Penske Ford 47.895
19 Austin Cindric #33 Team Penske Ford 47.900
20 Kaz Grala #16 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet 47.925
21 Joey Logano #22 Team Penske Ford 47.943
22 Chase Briscoe #14 Stewart Chevrolet 47.956
23 Ryan Newman #6 Roush Fenway Racing Ford 47.960
24 Ross Chastain #42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet 47.972
25 Cole Custer #41 Stewart Ford 48.060
26 Brad Keselowski #2 Team Penske Ford 48.072
27 Michael McDowell #34 Front Row Motorsports Ford 48.124
28 Martin Truex Jr. #19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota 48.165
29 Erik Jones #43 Richard Petty Motorsports Chevrolet 48.189
30 Chris Buescher #17 Roush Fenway Racing Ford 48.269
31 Tyler Reddick #8 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet 48.347
32 Anthony Alfredo #38 Front Row Motorsports Ford 48.422
33 Ty Dillon #96 Gaunt Brothers Racing Toyota 48.440
34 Jamie McMurray #77 Spire Motorsports Chevrolet 48.746
35 Corey LaJoie #7 Spire Motorsports Chevrolet 48.767
36 Quin Houff #00 StarCom Racing Chevrolet 49.571
37 Garrett Smithley #13 MBM Motorsports Ford 49.880
38 B.J. McLeod #78 Live Fast Motorsports Chevrolet 49.985
39 Timmy Hill #66 MBM Motorsports Toyota 50.016
40 Cody Ware #51 Petty Ware Racing Chevrolet 50.074
41 Joey Gase #53 Rick Ware Racing Ford 50.630
42 Josh Bilicki #52 Rick Ware Racing Ford 50.926
43 Derrike Cope #15 Rick Ware Racing Chevrolet DNF
44 Noah Gragson #62 Beard Motorsports Chevrolet DNF