Byron starts from pole in Cup title race

AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) William Byron will start from the pole at Phoenix Raceway, trying to win his first Cup Series championship and give the famed No. 24 Chevrolet its first title since Jeff Gordon in 2001.

Byron turned a lap at 132.597 mph Saturday in qualifying to earn the top starting spot. The Hendrick Motorsports driver won the Phoenix race in the spring and a sweep Sunday would give him the Cup in his first appearance in NASCAR's final four.

“I feel like we have something to race with,” said Byron, who had Gordon watching his qualifying effort from pit road. Gordon won four championships driving the No. 24.


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