Austin Dillon rebounded from a technical infraction in practice to celebrate his 29th birthday on a high by putting his No. 3 Dow Chevrolet on the pole for tomorrow’s Geico 500 at Talladega Superspeedway.

NASCAR officials saw an issue with the rear deck lid of his Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 this morning and confiscated the part. The series has yet to assess a penalty to the team and driver.

The Welcome, North Carolina native responded by solidly making it into the Top 12 single car shootout for the pole.

Clint Bowyer had the stranglehold on the field as he set a hot lap of 49.947 seconds. Dillon was the second to last driver to roar out of the gate and bested Bowyer by nearly two tenths with a lap of 49.734s.

The pole is Dillon’s second of the year and his first at Talladega and the sixth for team owner and grandfather Richard Childress at the 2.66-mile superspeedway.

After starting the day in a hole, the two-time Monster Energy Cup Series winner was elated with the accomplishment.

“It’s RCR’s 50th Anniversary, and my grandfather takes a lot of pride in these speedway races. To come here and get a pole, we felt like we had a car capable of doing that. We knew that didn’t hurt us, so we just wanted to go out there and do what we did. Get a pole.”

Last year’s fall Talladega winner Aric Almirola knocked his Stewart Haas Racing teammate Bowyer off the front row at the last second to take his third front-row start of the year.

Bowyer ended up third alongside five-time Talladega winner Brad Keselowski, the fastest of the Team Penske squad.

Daniel Hemric qualified fifth to put both RCR cars in the top five while Ricky Stenhouse, Jr. clocked the sixth quickest time to secure his sixth Talladega top ten starting spot.

Team Penske’s final two bullets of Ryan Blaney and Joey Logano locked out the fourth row while the Chevrolets of Alex Bowman and Kyle Larson rounded out the top ten.

Former Talladega polesitter Chase Elliott ended up 11th quick while the Front Row Motorsports entry of Michael McDowell completed the top twelve.

No Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota advanced to Q2 for the first time of the year with Martin Truex, Jr the quickest of the squad in 20th. Kyle Busch and Denny Hamlin ended up 22nd and 23rd respectively while Erik Jones qualified 27th.