Larson leads the way in final practice

Kyle Larson topped the speed charts in the third and final NASCAR Sprint Cup practice session at Martinsville Speedway.

Larson's lap of 95.468mph (19.835 seconds) was enough to put him P1 in Happy Hour, leading Kyle Busch, Ryan Newman, Martin Truex Jr., and Jimmie Johnson. He was also the fastest among the handful of drivers that ran 30 consecutive laps.

Newman was once again near the top of the charts and was told by crew chief Luke Lambert that they are "one of, it not the best."

Despite clocking in sixth, Hamlin was not happy with the feel of his car. "Front doesn't turn, it's chattering real bad. If I put any wheel in it at all, it just shakes."

Brian Vickers ended practice P8, but had a bit of a run-in with Paul Menard. The No. 27 gave Vickers a few shots in the rear bumper before the No. 14 pulled to the side and let him go. “I think we have the same car, just an unfortunate incident there,” said crew chief Mike Bugarewicz.

Kasey Kahne was ninth, explaining to his team, "It seems a little better, but my left front's not down. It's up on entry and it gets me loose."

Kurt Busch only put up the 17th-fastest time, but was mostly happy with the car. "Little tight back to the gas is my only weakness right now." 

Dale Earnhardt Jr. struggled to find the balance with several changes being thrown at the No. 88. This thing is (freakin) tight," he said over the radio. "I'm plowing into the center, just plowing, dragging the (crap) out of the left front. If we fix that, there ain't nothing wrong with the back except it gets a little loose in under braking late into that run. But I'm so (freakin) tight."

The session went green from start to finish.

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Event Martinsville
Sub-event Saturday practice
Track Martinsville Speedway
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Kurt Busch , Ryan Newman , Denny Hamlin , Kyle Larson
Article type Practice report