Byron held off a late challenge in Hendrick Motorsports teammate Alex Bowman to maintain the pole to next Sunday’s Daytona 500 at Daytona International Speedway.

Byron’s lap at the final form of 194.304 mph just edged Bowman (194.153 miles ), that was the last car to earn a run.

Jimmie Johnson has been third-fastest, Chase Elliott was rookie Daniel Hemric completed the top five. Only the top two drivers are locked in their starting location for the 500.

The pole is Byron’s in 37 career starts and working with new crew chief Chad Knaus, who won seven Cup titles with Johnson.

&ldquoWe believed we were prepared and ready and this was sort of the first step of the process together,” Byron said of dealing together with Knaus. “next 10, Hopefully , it goes well. We can sort of hang during the Duel races, so learn a little bit.

Byron, 2-1, said he had been a little worried he left some speed on the course, specially because he watched Bowman — this past year’s Daytona 500 pole winner — create his final run.

“We simply lacked slightly waking upto date, just a touch a lot of wheel-spin,” Byron explained. “This thing is fast. Apparently, a lot of credit goes to the guys. I’m really looking forward to next Sunday.

“This is pretty special and definitely a huge blessing. ”

Byron’s pole is HMS’ fifth consecutive pole at the summer ’s biggest race plus he is your company ’s different motorist to achieve that.

Round 1

HMS directed the way in the first round since it four drivers posted the major four speeds in the first round, headed by Bowman (193.932 miles ).

Byron finished up moment (193.831 miles ), Elliott was third (193.831 miles ) and also Johnson fourth (192.930 miles ).

Also advancing to the final round were Keselowski, Truex, Bowyer, Hemric, Austin Dillon, Hamlin and Menard.

As two fastest cars with out a charter at the first round, Tyler Reddick and Casey Mears have locked themselves into the Daytona 500 field based on speed.

“I’m really excited in exactly what people ’t got,” said Reddick, the 2018 Xfinity Series champion. “It’s mad. A lot has happened in a year. I&rsquo.

“It seems awesome to be locked in. Even the (car) did everything it had to for people to lock in. Can’t even wait for the duels Thursday. ”

Four drivers — Ryan Truex, Brendan Gaughan, Parker Kligerman and also Joey Gase — may have to race their way into the area but there are only two areas designed for those drivers.

Throughout pre-qualifying review, the cars of Elliott, Austin Dillon and Ty Dillon all collapsed two times. Each team’s vehicle leader has been ejected for the rest of both Speedweeks and 15 minutes have been lost by each team before the 500 from clinic that was final.