The NASCAR Cup series hits the east coast this weekend to take on the Monster Mile. The two-day show at Dover does not allow the drivers much time to dial in their cars for Sunday's race, so unloading off the truck is once again an extremely important factor for every team.

One driver that was able to take advantage of that was Chris Buescher. The Roush Fenway Keselowski Racing driver earned the first Cup pole of his career today at Dover. Buescher posted a lap at 160.149 mph in the final group of ten drivers to take the top spot. It is the first pole for the organization in nearly five years, with their last coming in May of 2017 at Talladega.

“That’s just awesome right there,” Buescher said. “It did everything in practice that I wanted. Brad went out there and put down some really great laps and came over, saw some things, and relayed it. We did a good job working on this thing. We went out and got on the front row. That’s a heck of a start. Awesome to do it here in Dover. I love this place. It’s a ride. We’re flying around here. That’s more throttle time I think I’ve ever had around Dover. I’m proud of everybody. Now we have to keep it rolling.”

Buescher is the fourth first-time pole winner so far this season.

Denny Hamlin will start on the front row tomorrow, leading the charge for Joe Gibbs Racing. Hendrick Motorsports teammates Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott will start from Row 2 while Ryan Blaney and Alex Bowman share Row 3. Trackhouse Racing teammates Ross Chastain and Daniel Suarez will start from Row 4 while the Toyotas of Bubba Wallace and Kyle Busch rounded out the top ten qualifiers on Saturday.

Larson should be considered one of the favorites tomorrow. His last three finishes at Dover are 3rd, 1st, and 2nd with 417 laps led. Hendrick dominated this race last year, earning a 1-2-3-4 finish with Bowman taking the checkered flag. That was just the third time in NASCAR history that a team swept the top four finishing spots, as they led 382 of the 400 laps. It was the 21st Dover victory for the team, which is easily the most of any organization.

Elliott is the championship points leader, despite being the only Hendrick driver without a race win this season. Elliott is a former winner at the Monster Mile and hopes to find victory lane again tomorrow. “I want to win just as much as everyone else, if not more,” he said. “I always want to win, and I always have an expectation of myself to want to go and perform. That expectation is the only one that matters to me, and I want to do the job to the best of my ability always, whether you have a win in the bank or not. For me, that doesn’t make me try any harder.”

There will be plenty of other contenders tomorrow, including former winners Kyle Busch, Martin Truex Jr, and Kevin Harvick, whom all have three Monster Mile victories. Harvick, who just missed the final round and will start 11th, has finished sixth or better (including two wins) in the last seven Dover races. His 1,666 laps led at Dover are by far the most among all active drivers.

In addition to his three wins at Dover, Truex has had three runner-up finishes in his last four starts here. In fact, the Joe Gibbs Racing driver has eight top-four finishes in his last ten starts at the Monster Mile. He has also led 996 laps, trailing only Harvick and Busch.

Starting further back in Row 9 are JGR teammates Truex and Christopher Bell. Buescher's teammate Brad Keselowski will start in 20th position as he continues to try to turn his season around.

The Richard Childress Racing duo of Austin Dillon (24th) and Tyler Reddick (26th) both struggled throughout practice and qualifying. William Byron, Todd Gilliland, Harrison Burton, and Josh Bilicki did not make a qualifying attempt after crashes in practice.

Team Penske badly needs to have a solid Sunday. While they have been improving, their finishes just haven't been there. The No. 2 car has won just twice in the last two years and those were both on superspeedways. Joey Logano struggled today and will be starting 22nd in his No. 22 Ford Mustang.

Logano has two wins over the last two years and one of those was on dirt and the other was the Clash at the Coliseum. His last non-points race win not on dirt was October 18, 2020 at Kansas. Blaney has been their most consistent driver this season but remains winless and has never finished inside the top five in 11 Dover starts.

This is only the second time since 1970 that Dover will host just one race in the season. The future of this track could be in jeopardy after it was recently sold to SMI. The 104th race that runs tomorrow could very well be the final NASCAR event at the speedway.

The pole sitter has won 13 times at Dover but it has been more than a decade (2011) since that last happened. Three of the last five Dover winners have come from a starting spot of Row 7 or worse. When it comes to manufacturers, Ford has only won twice in the last 20 races on the Monster Mile.

Coverage for tomorrow's DuraMAX Drydene 400 begins at 3 PM ET on FS1.