NASCAR starting lineup at Richmond: Matt Kenseth prevails in hot qualifying round

Matt Kenseth found a good qualifying setup on a hot and slick Richmond track to earn his 19th career pole.

Matt Kenseth battled the elements to win the pole for Sunday's Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race at Richmond International Raceway

Many drivers waited on pit road to make their runs in each round, many hoping for a stray cloud to block the sun and cool the track. It didn't happen, so the drivers went out on a very hot and slick track. Wind also apparently played a role in pushing several drivers out of their groove.

Kenseth ran a 22.300-second lap (121.076 mph) to beat out Ryan Blaney (22.341/120.854).

It was Kenseth's second pole at RIR, and the 19th pole of his NASCAR Cup career.

"It was a good qualifying lap for us… it feels good to be on the pole," Kenseth told FS1 after his qualifying run.

Kenseth, ranked 20th in the standings, hopes starting up front Sunday can pay off on race day.

"Hopefully this week we can start up front, stay up front, collect some stage points and hopefully we're in the mix at the end of the day," he said.

Dale Earnhardt Jr., running his first NASCAR race since announcing his pending retirement, qualified 12th. He's a three-time winner at Richmond, most recently in 2015.

Austin Dillon will start at the rear of the field, as a penalty for failing a prerace laser inspection five times at Bristol. The No. 3 team also was held out of practice for 30 minutes at Richmond as a penalty.

The Toyota Owners 400 begins Sunday at 2 p.m. ET and can be seen on Fox and the Fox Sports Go app.

Here is the starting lineup for the Toyota Owners 400:

1. Matt Kenseth
2. Ryan Blaney
3. Martin Truex Jr.
4. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
5. Joey Logano
6. Kevin Harvick
7. Kyle Busch
8. Clint Bowyer
9. Kurt Busch
10. Jamie McMurray
11. Daniel Suarez

Here is the starting lineup for the Toyota Owners 400:

12. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
13. Ryan Newman
14. Chase Elliott
15. Brad Keselowski
16. Denny Hamlin
17. Jimmie Johnson
18. Kyle Larson
19. Kasey Kahne
20. Erik Jones
21. Danica Patrick
22. AJ Allmendinger
23. Chris Buescher
24. Ty Dillon
25. Aric Almirola
26. Paul Menard
27. Michael McDowell
28. Landon Cassill
29.Trevor Bayne
30. David Ragan
31. Gray Gaulding
32. Matt DiBenedetto
33. Reed Sorenson
34. Corey Lajoie
35. Jeffrey Earnhardt
36. Cole Whitt
37. Timmy Hill
38. Austin Dillon*

* Starting at rear of the field as penalty for failing inspection at Bristol.

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