Larson tops first Pocono practice as Dale Jr. encounters engine issues

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Larson tops first Pocono practice as Dale Jr. encounters engine issues
Lee Spencer
By: Lee Spencer
Jun 9, 2017, 4:38 PM

Kyle Larson topped first practice at Pocono Raceway.

Larson established a fast lap of 177.312 on his 11th — and final lap in the session.

Kyle Busch was second followed by Matt Kenseth and the Fords of Kevin Harvick, Joey Logano Brad Keselowski and Ryan Blaney. Chevy drivers Jamie McMurray, Paul Menard and Jimmie Johnson rounded out the top 10 speeds.

Keselowski posted the quick lap early — 173.789mph. In the first 10 minutes, Larson was second 173.772mph followed by Kenseth (173.174mph), Ryan Newman (173.047mph), Denny Hamlin (173.007mph), Harvick (172.572mph), Clint Bowyer (172.483mph), McMurray (172.232mph), Kurt Busch (172.199mph) and AJ Allmendinger 9172.150mph).

Thirty drivers had posted times when NASCAR called a caution 13 minutes into the session for debris in Turn 1.

Just before the 25-minute mark, Dale Earnhardt Jr. had engine issues. He had completed eight laps and was 19th on the speed chart with a lap of 171.344mph. Earnhardt over-revving the engine resulted in the team needing to replace the engine. He will start from the rear on Sunday.

 

Thirty minutes into the 85-minute session, Keselowski continued to lead the top spot followed by Larson, Harvick (173.541mph), Kyle Busch (173.491mph), Ryan Blaney (173.404mph), Newman (173.397mph), Kenseth, Hamlin, McMurray and Bowyer.

Kyle Busch topped the speed chart 38-minutes into practice with a lap of 175.682mph on his third lap. Last weekend’s winner Jimmie Johnson moved into second with a lap of 174.338mph.

At the 50-minute mark, Larson popped up to the top of the board with a Q-run of 175.926mph.

“I probably gave up half a second in Turn 3,” Larson told the crew after posting the lap.

Kyle Busch remained second, Kenseth moved up to third (175.305mph) with McMurray (175.159mph) and Johnson rounding out the top-five speeds.

With 15 minutes remaining, Joey Logano jumped up to P1 with a speed of 176.564mph on his 13th lap. Larson, Kyle Busch, Kenseth and McMurray rounded out the top-five laps.

Kyle Busch took over the top spot with a lap of 177.235mph with just over 10 minutes left in practice. Harvick also leapt over Logano and Larson with a lap of 176.588mph. Kenseth (176.939mph) moved up to second with nine minutes to go.

But with seven minutes left in practice, Larson regained the top spot with a lap of 177.312mph.

Bubba Wallace made his first laps in a Cup car at Pocono Raceway on Friday. Wallace completed 21 laps. His team remarked after practice that his “preparation paid off.”

“I’m jacked up right now,” Wallace said. “Our Smithfield Fusion is ok, a little tight…It didn’t feel too much different. I’m just having fun.”

Trevor Bayne’s 22 laps were the most completed in the session.

Cla#DriverManufacturerLapsTimeGapIntervalMph
1 42 united_states Kyle Larson  Chevrolet 11 50.758     177.312
2 18 united_states Kyle Busch  Toyota 7 50.780 0.022 0.022 177.235
3 20 united_states Matt Kenseth  Toyota 13 50.865 0.107 0.085 176.939
4 4 united_states Kevin Harvick  Ford 15 50.966 0.208 0.101 176.588
5 22 united_states Joey Logano  Ford 15 50.973 0.215 0.007 176.564
6 2 united_states Brad Keselowski  Ford 15 51.087 0.329 0.114 176.170
7 21 united_states Ryan Blaney  Ford 14 51.249 0.491 0.162 175.613
8 1 united_states Jamie McMurray  Chevrolet 9 51.317 0.559 0.068 175.380
9 27 united_states Paul Menard  Chevrolet 13 51.324 0.566 0.007 175.357
10 48 united_states Jimmie Johnson  Chevrolet 7 51.349 0.591 0.025 175.271
11 11 united_states Denny Hamlin  Toyota 16 51.397 0.639 0.048 175.107
12 78 united_states Martin Truex Jr.  Toyota 7 51.420 0.662 0.023 175.029
13 14 united_states Clint Bowyer  Ford 14 51.476 0.718 0.056 174.839
14 31 united_states Ryan Newman  Chevrolet 13 51.487 0.729 0.011 174.801
15 41 united_states Kurt Busch  Ford 9 51.496 0.738 0.009 174.771
16 3 united_states Austin Dillon  Chevrolet 12 51.554 0.796 0.058 174.574
17 47 united_states A.J. Allmendinger  Chevrolet 13 51.600 0.842 0.046 174.419
18 10 united_states Danica Patrick  Ford 14 51.681 0.923 0.081 174.145
19 43 united_states Darrell Wallace Jr.  Ford 21 51.684 0.926 0.003 174.135
20 95 united_states Michael McDowell  Chevrolet 11 51.686 0.928 0.002 174.128
21 24 united_states Chase Elliott  Chevrolet 15 51.703 0.945 0.017 174.071
22 77 united_states Erik Jones  Toyota 13 51.753 0.995 0.050 173.903
23 5 united_states Kasey Kahne  Chevrolet 13 51.848 1.090 0.095 173.584
24 13 united_states Ty Dillon  Chevrolet 18 51.927 1.169 0.079 173.320
25 37 united_states Chris Buescher  Chevrolet 13 51.937 1.179 0.010 173.287
26 19 mexico Daniel Suarez  Toyota 16 52.025 1.267 0.088 172.994
27 6 united_states Trevor Bayne  Ford 22 52.119 1.361 0.094 172.682
28 17 united_states Ricky Stenhouse Jr.  Ford 11 52.349 1.591 0.230 171.923
29 88 united_states Dale Earnhardt Jr.  Chevrolet 8 52.526 1.768 0.177 171.344
30 38 united_states David Ragan  Ford 8 52.540 1.782 0.014 171.298
31 32 united_states Matt DiBenedetto  Ford 7 52.930 2.172 0.390 170.036
32 34 united_states Landon Cassill  Ford 16 52.988 2.230 0.058 169.850
33 83 united_states Corey Lajoie  Toyota 10 53.007 2.249 0.019 169.789
34 23 united_states Gray Gaulding  Toyota 9 53.084 2.326 0.077 169.543
35 15 united_states Reed Sorenson  Chevrolet 9 53.860 3.102 0.776 167.100
36 72 united_states Cole Whitt  Chevrolet 11 53.905 3.147 0.045 166.960
37 33 united_states Jeffrey Earnhardt  Chevrolet 19 54.652 3.894 0.747 164.678
38 51 united_states Cody Ware  Chevrolet 14 54.938 4.180 0.286 163.821
39 55 united_states Derrike Cope  Chevrolet 13 56.278 5.520 1.340 159.920
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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Pocono
Location Pocono Raceway
Author Lee Spencer
Article type Practice report