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On Saturday night in Bristol, only three of the 16 drivers in the Playoffs are guaranteed that their championship pursuit will continue regardless of what happens in NASCAR's most notorious short track race. One of those is Martin Truex Jr., who will begin Bristol's annual Night Race at the front of the field.

On Wednesday, Martin Truex Jr. was awarded the pole for the Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race at Bristol Motor Speedway by virtue of NASCAR's qualifying metric, which sets the starting lineup based on a driver's finishing position and fastest lap in the previous race -- as well as their points position.

Truex earned an automatic berth in the Playoffs' Round of 12 by winning last weekend at Richmond, joining Denny Hamlin and Kyle Larson in automatically advancing. Of the drivers who must have a strong showing at Bristol to advance to the Round of 12, Alex Bowman (+0 above the cut line) has the highest starting position in 11th.

The four drivers currently below the cutoff line all start in a cluster in Rows 7 and 8, which consist of Tyler Reddick, William Byron, Kurt Busch and Michael McDowell.

Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race Starting Lineup

1 - #19 - Martin Truex Jr.
2 - #11 - Denny Hamlin
3 - #22 - Joey Logano
4 - #9 - Chase Elliott
5 - #5 - Kyle Larson
6 - #20 - Christopher Bell
7 - #12 - Ryan Blaney
8 - #4 - Kevin Harvick
9 - #18 - Kyle Busch
10 - #2 - Brad Keselowski
11 - #48 - Alex Bowman
12 - #10 - Aric Almirola
13 - #8 - Tyler Reddick
14 - #24 - William Byron
15 - #1 - Kurt Busch
16 - #34 - Michael McDowell
17 - #42 - Ross Chastain
18 - #3 - Austin Dillon
19 - #21 - Matt DiBenedetto
20 - #14 - Chase Briscoe (R)
21 - #99 - Daniel Suarez
22 - #43 - Erik Jones
23 - #47 - Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
24 - #6 - Ryan Newman
25 - #17 - Chris Buescher
26 - #41 - Cole Custer
27 - #37 - Ryan Preece
28 - #23 - Bubba Wallace
29 - #77 - Justin Haley
30 - #38 - Anthony Alfredo (R)
31 - #7 - Corey LaJoie
32 - #78 - B.J. McLeod
33 - #52 - Josh Bilicki
34 - #00 - Quin Houff
35 - #51 - J.J. Yeley
36 - #53 - Garrett Smithley
37 - #15 - James Davison
38 - #66 - David Starr