Kurt Busch fastest in final NASCAR Cup practice at Sonoma

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Kurt Busch fastest in final NASCAR Cup practice at Sonoma
Jim Utter
By: Jim Utter
Jun 22, 2018, 11:10 PM

Kurt Busch led Friday’s second Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice session with the fastest lap of the day at Sonoma (Calif.) Raceway.

Midway through the session Friday, Busch posted an average lap speed of 94.061 mph – the fastest lap anyone had turned all day.

“I love road racing and I think it’s fun. It’s important to have a positive mindset everywhere, but it’s not problem for me at the road courses,” Busch said. “I just like the rhythm. I like how you use one corner to help you in the next corner. You have to be thinking three corners ahead.

“Everything seems to have a larger consequence because track position is so important. So, as soon as you have a flat tire or a fender rub or you go off track, it’s very difficult to get back the track position you once had.”

Denny Hamlin ended up second fastest (94.012 mph) and Martin Truex Jr. was third (93.718 mph). Jamie McMurray was fourth and last year’s race winner, Kevin Harvick, completed the top-five.

Truex ended up with some minor front-end damage to his No. 78 Toyota after a run-in with Darrell Wallace Jr. on the track.

Rounding out the Top 10 were Chris Buescher, Brad Keselowski, Trevor Bayne, Aric Almirola and Michael McDowell.

Ryan Blaney (29) completed the most laps in session.

About 10 minutes into the session, both Kyle Larson and William Byron had smoke coming from their respective cars and NASCAR threw a caution to check for oil on the track. Byron’s No. 24 Chevrolet appeared to have an axle failure.

Harvick had the fastest average lap speed of the drivers that completed at least 10 consecutive laps (91.468 mph). Kurt Busch was second and Clint Bowyer third in that category.

Cla#DriverManufacturerLapsTimeGapIntervalMph
1 41 united_states Kurt Busch  Ford 25 1'16.163     94.061
2 11 united_states Denny Hamlin  Toyota 22 1'16.203 0.040 0.040 94.012
3 78 united_states Martin Truex Jr.  Toyota 16 1'16.442 0.279 0.239 93.718
4 1 united_states Jamie McMurray  Chevrolet 25 1'16.580 0.417 0.138 93.549
5 4 united_states Kevin Harvick  Ford 28 1'16.669 0.506 0.089 93.441
6 37 united_states Chris Buescher  Chevrolet 18 1'16.692 0.529 0.023 93.413
7 2 united_states Brad Keselowski  Ford 26 1'16.734 0.571 0.042 93.361
8 6 united_states Trevor Bayne  Ford 14 1'16.802 0.639 0.068 93.279
9 10 united_states Aric Almirola  Ford 24 1'16.868 0.705 0.066 93.199
10 34 united_states Michael McDowell  Ford 16 1'16.904 0.741 0.036 93.155
11 38 united_states David Ragan  Ford 20 1'16.944 0.781 0.040 93.107
12 47 united_states A.J. Allmendinger  Chevrolet 21 1'16.970 0.807 0.026 93.075
13 3 united_states Austin Dillon  Chevrolet 21 1'17.098 0.935 0.128 92.921
14 42 united_states Kyle Larson  Chevrolet 22 1'17.116 0.953 0.018 92.899
15 9 united_states Chase Elliott  Chevrolet 24 1'17.223 1.060 0.107 92.770
16 32 united_states Matt DiBenedetto  Ford 18 1'17.394 1.231 0.171 92.565
17 14 united_states Clint Bowyer  Ford 30 1'17.424 1.261 0.030 92.529
18 48 united_states Jimmie Johnson  Chevrolet 26 1'17.429 1.266 0.005 92.523
19 18 united_states Kyle Busch  Toyota 21 1'17.435 1.272 0.006 92.516
20 95 united_states Kasey Kahne  Chevrolet 19 1'17.457 1.294 0.022 92.490
21 88 united_states Alex Bowman  Chevrolet 23 1'17.534 1.371 0.077 92.398
22 17 united_states Ricky Stenhouse Jr.  Ford 24 1'17.535 1.372 0.001 92.397
23 13 united_states Ty Dillon  Chevrolet 20 1'17.571 1.408 0.036 92.354
24 12 united_states Ryan Blaney  Ford 29 1'17.596 1.433 0.025 92.324
25 24 united_states William Byron  Chevrolet 15 1'17.634 1.471 0.038 92.279
26 72 united_states Cole Whitt  Chevrolet 13 1'17.772 1.609 0.138 92.115
27 31 united_states Ryan Newman  Chevrolet 22 1'17.790 1.627 0.018 92.094
28 20 united_states Erik Jones  Toyota 23 1'17.794 1.631 0.004 92.089
29 23 united_states Gray Gaulding  Toyota 5 1'17.808 1.645 0.014 92.073
30 22 united_states Joey Logano  Ford 20 1'17.881 1.718 0.073 91.986
31 15 united_states Justin Marks  Chevrolet 15 1'17.953 1.790 0.072 91.902
32 21 united_states Paul Menard  Ford 20 1'17.990 1.827 0.037 91.858
33 19 mexico Daniel Suarez  Toyota 26 1'18.162 1.999 0.172 91.656
34 43 united_states Darrell Wallace Jr.  Chevrolet 22 1'18.175 2.012 0.013 91.641
35 96 united_states Parker Kligerman  Toyota 14 1'18.222 2.059 0.047 91.585
36 51 united_states Chris Cook  Ford 7 1'18.698 2.535 0.476 91.032
37 52 united_states Cody Ware  Chevrolet 5 1'19.849 3.686 1.151 89.719
38 00 united_states Tomy Drissi  Chevrolet 13 1'19.949 3.786 0.100 89.607
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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Sonoma
Location Sonoma Raceway
Drivers Kurt Busch
Teams Stewart-Haas Racing
Author Jim Utter
Article type Practice report