Date: March 3, 2017
Event: Aspen Dental Qualifying Day for the Folds of Honor 500
Series: Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series
Location: Atlanta Motor Speedway (1.54-mile oval)
Pole Winner: Kevin Harvick of Stewart-Haas Racing (29.118 seconds at 190.398 mph)
● Kevin Harvick (1st, 29.118 seconds at 190.398 mph in Round 3)
● Kurt Busch (13th, 29.649 seconds at 186.988 mph in Round 2)
● Danica Patrick (24th, 30.344 seconds at 182.705 mph in Round 2)
● Clint Bowyer (25th, 29.723 seconds at 186.522 mph in Round 1)
Format involved three rounds of knockout qualifying:
● Round 1: 20 minutes, top-24 advance to Round 2. (Sets positions 25-40.)
● Round 2: 10 minutes, top-12 advance to Round 3. (Sets positions 13-24.)
● Round 3: 5 minutes, top-12 battle for the pole. (Sets positions 1-12.)
● This is the 31st Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series pole for SHR since its inception in 2009 and the organization’s first of the season.
● This was Harvick’s 18th career NASCAR Cup Series pole, his second at Atlanta and his first of the season.
● Five cars did not pass technical inspection and did not participate in the first round of knockout qualifying.
● NASCAR’s new lower downforce package debuted today at Atlanta. Compared to 2016 regulations, this year’s rules feature a spoiler height decrease from 3.5 inches to 2.375 inches, a 3-inch reduction of the outboard regions of the splitter, and a tapered rear deck fin to match the spoiler’s height.
● Also new for 2017 is that drivers must start the race on the tires they used in qualifying.
● The Folds of Honor 500 gets underway at 2:30 p.m. EST Sunday with live coverage provided by FOX.