Kyle Busch tops Nationwide qualifying from Atlanta

For as much as Kyle Busch says he struggles at Atlanta Motor Speedway, this weekend should be a thrill for the Las Vegas native.

After finishing second in Friday night’s Camping World Truck Series race, Busch qualified on the pole for Saturday’s NASCAR Nationwide Series race from Atlanta Motor Speedway.

Busch, who showed speed in the morning practice sessions in his No.54 Toyota, took the pole after being one of the final 10 cars to qualify for the NRA American Warrior 300.

“We worked a lot on what’s going to happen with the different lanes of the racing track and what happens from the top to the bottom. But, the car was pretty good,” said Busch.

The pole marks the first time this season that Busch has won the pole in the Nationwide Series, and the first for his Kyle Busch Motorsports team in Nationwide competition.

“It’s pretty cool. Certainly you want to win as many as you can, poles and race victories. Mike Beam (crew chief) and the guys have worked really, really hard this year and we just keep plugging away and keep getting to where our cars are faster and that was pretty cool right there.

“Had a big slip out of (turn) four, but still got the pole. Didn’t expect it, didn’t think it would hold up. Apparently everyone else slipped, too.”

Busch, who’s a past winner at AMS, now has his tenth consecutive season of winning the pole in the Nationwide Series. The pole also makes Busch the all-time pole winner at AMS for the Nationwide Series with three.

Starting alongside Busch for tonight’s 300-mile race is the defending Nationwide champion, Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

The two drivers with arguably the most recognizable names in the series, Travis Pastrana and Danica Patrick, will start the race from the 16th and 17th spots respectively.

With 44 cars attempting to make the starting field for the race, one driver failed to qualify.

John Jackson, who went out early in the session, failed to make the 43 car field.

NRA American Warrior 300 Starting Lineup

1: Kyle Busch

2: Ricky Stenhouse Jr.

3: Kevin Harvick

4: Kasey Kahne

5: Denny Hamlin

6: Sam Hornish Jr.

7: Elliott Sadler

8: Brad Keselowski

9: Austin Dillon

10: Mike Bliss

11: Reed Sorenson

12: Cole Whitt

13: Justin Allgaier

14: Michael Annett

15: Brian Scott

16: Travis Pastrana

17: Danica Patrick

18: Joe Nemechek

19: David Starr

20: Jason Bowles

21: Jeff Green

22: Blake Koch

23: James Buescher

24: Kyle Fowler

25: Jeremy Clements

26: Matt Carter

27: Mike Wallace

28: Erik Darnell

29: Josh Wise

30: Eric McClure

31: Chase Miller

32: Carl Long

34: Timmy Hill

35: JJ Yeley

36: Benny Gordon

37: Morgan Shepard

38: Tayler Malsam

39: Mike Harmon

40: Tony Raines

41: Robert Richardson Jr.

42: Fain Skinner

43: Joey Gase