Erik Jones Leads Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 Qualifying
Last April, Erik Jones became the youngest pole winner for a NASCAR XFINITY Series race at Bristol Motor Speedway. A year later, the 19-year-old again put himself at the top of the speed chart in qualifying for the Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300.
The Joe Gibbs Racing driver edged out Austin Dillon with a lap of 125.914 mph for his second pole at the .533-mile track and fifth of his XFINITY Series career.
Jones, who drives the No. 20 machine, and other odd-numbered qualifiers will compete in the first of two 50-lap heat races scheduled to start at 12:30 p.m. The second heat race will feature Dillon, who will be driving the No. 2 Chevrolet, and the rest of the even-numbered qualifiers.
The heat races set the starting positions for the 200-lap main scheduled to start around 1:45 p.m. The front row for the main will be made up of the heat race winners and the fastest of those two from qualifying has lane choice.
The Fitzgerald Glider Kits 300 is the first of four Dash 4 Cash races this season. The top two finishing XFINITY Series points-earning drivers in each of the two heat races will make up the Dash 4 Cash field in the main race and the highest-finishing driver of those four will earn the $100,000 Dash 4 Cash bonus.
Jones is fifth in the points standings and still in search of his first victory of the season. Series points leader Daniel Suarez posted the fourth fastest lap behind Jones, Dillon and Kyle Larson in the third and final round of qualifying on Saturday.
Jones paced the second qualifying round with a 125.420 mph lap. Larson was second followed by Suarez, Aric Almirola and Dillon.
Jeb Burton completed three laps in the first round of qualifying and one of those was the fastest of any driver the session at 125.765 mph. Larson was second followed by Justin Allgaier and Kyle Busch and Jones. The first qualifying round was brought to a stop for a few moments after Derrike Cope scraped the wall.