Denny Hamlin wins pole at Watkins Glen

Denny Hamlin sits in his car prior to practice for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series auto race, Saturday, July 28, 2018, in Long Pond, Pa. (AP Photo/Derik Hamilton)

Maybe Watkins Glen will be where Denny Hamlin joins the exclusive club of winners in 2018.

Hamlin is still searching for his first win of the season but will start first Sunday at Watkins Glen. Barring an inspection failure, of course. With Cup Series qualifying concluding close to 8 p.m. ET on Saturday, NASCAR will conduct post-qualifying inspection on Sunday morning. Given that the entire front row failed inspection at Pocono a week ago, getting through inspection is no guarantee.

The pole is Hamlin’s first of the season and the 27th of his career. He won at Watkins Glen in 2016, his only road course win in the Cup Series. He’ll start alongside teammate Kyle Busch (tentatively) while Chase Elliott, Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Larson round out the provisional top five.

Kevin Harvick, tied for a series leading six wins with Busch, will start 16th. Here’s the full lineup.

1. Denny Hamlin
2. Kyle Busch
3. Chase Elliott
4. Martin Truex Jr.
5. Kyle Larson
6. Joey Logano
7. Aric Almirola
8. AJ Allmendinger
9. Erik Jones
10. Kasey Kahne
11. Ryan Blaney
12. Michael McDowell
13. Jimmie Johnson
14. Paul Menard
15. Jamie McMurray
16. Kevin Harvick
17. William Byron
18. Brad Keselowski
19. Clint Bowyer
20. Ryan Newman
21. Kurt Busch
22. Chris Buescher
23. Daniel Suarez
24. Alex Bowman
25. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
26. Austin Dillon
27. David Ragan
28. Matt Kenseth
29. Parker Kligerman
30. Matt DiBenedetto
31. Bubba Wallace
32. Ty Dillon
33. Cole Whitt
34. Ross Chastain
35. Josh Bilicki
36. Spencer Gallagher
37. Landon Cassill

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.

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