Edwards leads opening Cup practice at repaved Kentucky
Carl Edwards set the quick pace in the first practice for Saturday’s Quaker State 400 at Kansas Speedway on Thursday.
Thirty-eight minutes into the session, Edwards logged a lap of 186.451 mph on his 24th circuit around the newly paved and reconfigured 1.5-mile track. His 51 laps were also the most completed during the first session.
"It’s a beautiful surface,” Edwards said “It’s really smooth. Turns 1 and 2 are very different than 3 and 4….that’s going to make things really good.”
Edwards’ Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch was second quick with a lap of 186.181 mph, followed by the Toyotas of Martin Truex Jr. (185.217 mph) and Denny Hamlin (195.084 mph). The Chevys of Jimmie Johnson (184.989 mph) and Austin Dillon (184.754 mph) broke up the Camry parade. The Fords of Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (184.729 mph) and Chris Buescher (184.603 mph) were seventh and eighth, respectively, with Chase Elliott (184.559 mph) and Greg Biffle (184.250 mph) rounding out the top 10 speeds in single laps runs.
Only four drivers participated in Best 10 Consecutive Lap Average runs with Johnson’s 181.441 mph leading the list. Elliott (180.897 mph) was second followed by Hamlin (180.897 mph) and Ty Dillon (180.042 mph).
Less than two minutes into the session, Brad Keselowski slapped the right rear of the No. 2 Miller Lite Ford in between Turns 3 and 4. NASCAR waved the yellow momentarily before the field returned to practice. Just past the 20-minute mark, Kasey Kahne slapped the wall coming out of Turn 2.
After the first hour of practice, Josh Wise blew an engine. The session was delayed for about 10 minutes to clean the track.
“He blew up pretty big into the corner — all the way through 1,” spotter Josh Williams told the No. 21 crew.
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