Kevin Harvick fastest in Friday's lone Cup practice at Fontana
If Kevin Harvick is going to win his fourth consecutive Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race, he’s off to a good start.
Harvick rocketed to the top of the leaderboard early in Friday’s lone 50-minute practice session with an average lap speed of 189.066 mph, which would set a track record if it took place in qualifying.
“I think as you look at the schedule for us, I think this is one that we’ve all had circled since I’ve been at SHR as a track that we hadn’t won at, that we felt like we’ve run well enough to win at,” Harvick said Friday at Auto Club Speedway.
“For me personally, it’s obviously close to home and I crashed coming to the green flag last year, so there’s got to be a little bit of redemption somewhere along the line to pick yourself back up and recover from that.”
Harvick’s Stewart-Haas Racing teammates, Clint Bowyer and Aric Almirola, were second and third-fastest, respectively. Ryan Newman and Kyle Larson completed the top-five.
Rounding out the Top 10 were Denny Hamlin, Martin Truex Jr., Erik Jones, Austin Dillon and Alex Bowman.
Nearly 19 minutes into the session, Daniel Suarez slammed into the Turn 2 wall, doing significant damage to the right-rear area of his No. 19 Toyota. He had completed just two laps on the track.
The team immediately went to work to get the backup car prepared. The change will mean Suarez will have to start Sunday’s race from the rear of the field regardless of where he qualifies later Friday.
“When I hit a seam (on the track), it stepped out on me and I couldn’t do anything,” Suarez said.
Reed Sorenson was forced to sit out 15 minutes of Friday’s practice after his team failed pre-race inspection twice at Las Vegas (the most recent race in which the team completed).
|7||78||Martin Truex Jr.||Toyota||5||38.438||0.356||0.001||187.315|
|18||43||Darrell Wallace Jr.||Chevrolet||7||38.743||0.661||0.011||185.840|
|25||17||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||Ford||13||38.921||0.839||0.006||184.990|
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|Location||Auto Club Speedway|