Michael McDowell earned his first career pole position in his 467th career NASCAR Cup Series race during Saturday qualifying for the Ambetter Health 400 at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

McDowell was second after round one of qualifying and then rallied at the controls of his No. 34 Frontrow Motorsports Ford to post a winning speed of 178.844 mph (30.999 seconds).

McDowell will be joined on the front row for tomorrow’s Ambetter Health 400 (3 p.m., FOX, PRN Radio) by defending event winner Joey Logano, who was second with a speed of 178.424 in his No. 22 Team Penske Ford.

McDowell and his team were thrilled with the result on the 1.5-mile intermediate track that races like a superspeedway.

“That was awesome,” McDowell said with a big grin. “This Mustang is really fast and hopefully it runs well tomorrow. I don’t think people realize what it takes to have that much speed.” 

Seven of the top 10 cars were Fords, including Todd Gilliland in fourth, defending champ Ryan Blaney in sixth, Chris Buescher in seventh, Austin Cindric in eighth and Chase Briscoe in ninth.

The highest qualifying Chevy was driven by Kyle Busch, who held the top spot for a while before qualifying third in his No. 8 Richard Childress Racing Chevy. Kyle Larson qualified fifth and Austin Dillon was 10th.

Daytona 500 winner William Byron will start 11th in his No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevy. The highest qualifying Toyotas were Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Martin Truex Jr. in 12th and Denny Hamlin in 13th.

Tickets for Sunday’s Ambetter Health 400 are available online at www.AtlantaMotorSpeedway.com or by calling 877-9-AMS-TIX.