Harrison Burton and the No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Mustang are set to start 31st in Sunday’s Ambetter 301 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.
Burton and the team had hopes for a better starting position after a successful practice session Saturday morning.
He was 13th fastest in practice, turning a best lap at 126.433 miles per hour on the fourth of the 20 laps he ran.
He was sixth best among drivers who ran 10 consecutive laps in practice, averaging 125.958 mph on Laps 2 through 11.
But in qualifying, his speed dropped to 123.723 mph.
Crew chief Brian Wilson said he and the Motorcraft/Quick Lane team remain optimistic heading into Sunday.
“The No. 21 Ford had good speed in race trim but we missed the balance in qualifying,” Wilson said. “We’re all confident that we can build on our race trim balance for tomorrow’s race.”
Sunday’s 301-mile race is scheduled to get the green flag just after 3 p.m. with TV coverage on USA Network.