Jimmie Johnson leads the first practice session of the Chase
NASCAR Sprint Cup teams ran an abbreviated practice session on Friday after rain compressed activities at Chicagoland Speedway.
Earlier in the afternoon, NASCAR cancelled qualifying for Sunday’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400 so teams concentrated solely on race set up.
Jimmie Johnson, who is still looking for his first win at the 1.5-mile track nestled in Joliet, Ill., led the initial practice session with a lap of 183.780mph (29.383-sec).
Carl Edwards (183.299mph), Denny Hamlin (182.927mph), Brad Keselowski (182.655mph) and Chase Elliott (182.568mph) rounded out the top five in single-lap runs.
Elliott also completed the most laps of anyone at 48, followed by Hamlin at 44.
Alex Bowman, who is filling in for the sidelined Dale Earnhardt Jr., broke up the Chase contenders with the sixth fastest speed (182.285mph). As he was coming to pit road following the one-hour session, he spun out coming off of Turn 4. Martin Truex Jr. (182.106mph) was seventh quick followed by Kyle Larson (182.045mph), Ryan Blaney (182.045mph) and Kyle Busch, who rolls off first on Sunday since he’s the top seed in the Chase.
Other Chasers included Austin Dillon (11th), Kevin Harvick (12th), Matt Kenseth (13th), Kurt Busch (15th), Joey Logano (17th), Tony Stewart (20th), Jamie McMurray (21st) and Chris Buescher (33rd).
Johnson again led the way in ten-lap averages at 180.909mph, followed by Truex, Dillon, Hamlin, and non-Chaser Paul Menard.
Ty Dillon subbed for Regan Smith in the No. 7 Tommy Baldwin Racing Chevy for Regan Smith, who flew back to North Carolina to await the birth of his second child.
|7||78||Martin Truex Jr.||Toyota||35||29.653||0.270||0.029||182.106|
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