NASCAR Martinsville starting lineup 2012: Jimmie Johnson leads qualifying

If the starting lineup is any indication, Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway could dramatically impact the Chase picture.

Brad Keselowski is the points leader with four races to go, but his seven-point margin over Jimmie Johnson is in jeopardy after Keselowski qualified 32nd and Johnson won the pole position.

The pole, Johnson's third of the season, might allow him to catch and possibly lap Keselowski early in the race before the No. 2 team can work on its strategy.

"I don't want to count them out," Johnson said. "It would be foolish for me to sit here and think they're not going to race their way through. ... They're going to have a tough time on pit road with that (pit stall) pick."

Brian Vickers qualified second in Michael Waltrip Racing's No. 55 car, followed by Kyle Busch, Jeff Burton and the other main Chase contender – Denny Hamlin.

Dale Earnhardt Jr., in his first race back after recovering from concussions, qualified 20th.

Mike Bliss and JJ Yeley failed to qualify for Sunday's race.

Here's the starting lineup for Sunday's NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Martinsville Speedway:

  1. Jimmie Johnson
  2. Brian Vickers
  3. Kyle Busch
  4. Jeff Burton
  5. Denny Hamlin
  6. Matt Kenseth
  7. Tony Stewart
  8. Clint Bowyer
  9. Paul Menard
  10. Aric Almirola
  11. Jeff Gordon
  12. Martin Truex Jr.
  13. Kevin Harvick
  14. Joey Logano
  15. Kasey Kahne
  16. David Ragan
  17. Ryan Newman
  18. Bobby Labonte
  19. Kurt Busch
  20. Dale Earnhardt Jr.
  21. Michael McDowell
  22. Casey Mears
  23. Carl Edwards
  24. Jamie McMurray
  25. Juan Pablo Montoya
  26. AJ Allmendinger
  27. Sam Hornish Jr.
  28. Ken Schrader
  29. David Reutimann
  30. Greg Biffle
  31. Josh Wise
  32. Brad Keselowski
  33. Marcos Ambrose
  34. Landon Cassill
  35. David Gilliland
  36. Scott Riggs
  37. Dave Blaney
  38. Joe Nemechek
  39. Reed Sorenson
  40. David Stremme
  41. Travis Kvapil
  42. Stephen Leicht
  43. Scott Speed
DNQ: Mike Bliss, JJ Yeley
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