Chase Elliott leads final Cup practice at Watkins Glen

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Chase Elliott leads final Cup practice at Watkins Glen
By: Jim Utter
Aug 4, 2018, 6:31 PM

Chase Elliott, looking for his first Top 10 finish at Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International, led the way in Saturday’s final Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice session.

Elliott’s set the fastest average lap speed of 124.520 mph with just minutes left in the one-hour, 15-minute session.

In five career road course starts, Elliott earned his career-best finish of fourth earlier this season at Sonoma, Calif. He’s finished 13th in both trips to the Glen.

Denny Hamlin ended up second (124.365 mph) while Aric Almirola was third (123.979 mph). Rookie William Byron was fourth and Michael McDowell completed the top-five.

Rounding out the Top 10 were Jimmie Johnson, Jamie McMurray, Kasey Kahne, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. and last year’s race winner, Martin Truex Jr.

Truex is looking for his third consecutive road course victory in the Cup series.

“It’s a great race track and I really enjoy the road racing. We’ll see if we can make it three in a row. I feel like things would have went right, maybe we would have got three in a row and been going for four,” Truex said.

“That’s racing and that’s the way it goes. Being able to put it all together last year here and win was a big win for my career.”

With 35 minutes left in the session, a caution was displayed to clear the inner-loop area of reported debris. The session quickly returned to green.

Both Michael McDowell and Chase Elliott had to make pass-thru penalties on pit road during practice for driving through the inner-loop and failing to come to a stop.

Cla # Driver 4506 Laps Time Gap Interval Mph
1 9 United States Chase Elliott  Chevrolet 25 1'10.832     124.520
2 11 United States Denny Hamlin  Toyota 23 1'10.920 0.088 0.088 124.365
3 10 United States Aric Almirola  Ford 19 1'11.141 0.309 0.221 123.979
4 24 United States William Byron  Chevrolet 20 1'11.142 0.310 0.001 123.977
5 34 United States Michael McDowell  Ford 14 1'11.180 0.348 0.038 123.911
6 48 United States Jimmie Johnson  Chevrolet 19 1'11.304 0.472 0.124 123.696
7 1 United States Jamie McMurray  Chevrolet 25 1'11.312 0.480 0.008 123.682
8 95 United States Kasey Kahne  Chevrolet 11 1'11.324 0.492 0.012 123.661
9 17 United States Ricky Stenhouse Jr.  Ford 14 1'11.416 0.584 0.092 123.502
10 78 United States Martin Truex Jr.  Toyota 23 1'11.442 0.610 0.026 123.457
11 21 United States Paul Menard  Ford 21 1'11.460 0.628 0.018 123.426
12 88 United States Alex Bowman  Chevrolet 23 1'11.521 0.689 0.061 123.320
13 4 United States Kevin Harvick  Ford 20 1'11.552 0.720 0.031 123.267
14 12 United States Ryan Blaney  Ford 21 1'11.606 0.774 0.054 123.174
15 19 Mexico Daniel Suarez  Toyota 21 1'11.630 0.798 0.024 123.133
16 37 United States Chris Buescher  Chevrolet 18 1'11.719 0.887 0.089 122.980
17 31 United States Ryan Newman  Chevrolet 17 1'11.723 0.891 0.004 122.973
18 41 United States Kurt Busch  Ford 31 1'11.748 0.916 0.025 122.930
19 18 United States Kyle Busch  Toyota 28 1'11.879 1.047 0.131 122.706
20 22 United States Joey Logano  Ford 31 1'11.970 1.138 0.091 122.551
21 6 United States Matt Kenseth  Ford 17 1'11.973 1.141 0.003 122.546
22 20 United States Erik Jones  Toyota 29 1'11.987 1.155 0.014 122.522
23 13 United States Ty Dillon  Chevrolet 22 1'12.159 1.327 0.172 122.230
24 14 United States Clint Bowyer  Ford 8 1'12.174 1.342 0.015 122.205
25 42 United States Kyle Larson  Chevrolet 35 1'12.198 1.366 0.024 122.164
26 2 United States Brad Keselowski  Ford 25 1'12.237 1.405 0.039 122.098
27 47 United States A.J. Allmendinger  Chevrolet 21 1'12.277 1.445 0.040 122.031
28 38 United States David Ragan  Ford 18 1'12.373 1.541 0.096 121.869
29 3 United States Austin Dillon  Chevrolet 22 1'12.636 1.804 0.263 121.427
30 72 United States Cole Whitt  Chevrolet 13 1'12.767 1.935 0.131 121.209
31 96 United States Parker Kligerman  Toyota 18 1'12.852 2.020 0.085 121.067
32 32 United States Matt DiBenedetto  Ford 12 1'13.375 2.543 0.523 120.204
33 43 United States Darrell Wallace Jr.  Chevrolet 21 1'13.444 2.612 0.069 120.091
34 23 United States Spencer Gallagher  Toyota 11 1'13.758 2.926 0.314 119.580
35 00 United States Landon Cassill  Chevrolet 8 1'14.774 3.942 1.016 117.955
36 51 United States Josh Bilicki  Chevrolet        
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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Watkins Glen
Drivers Chase Elliott
Teams Hendrick Motorsports
Author Jim Utter
Article type Practice report