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Practice report
NASCAR Cup New Hampshire

NASCAR Cup NHMS: Hocevar leads brief practice; Sunday start time changed

The weather continues to wreak havoc on NASCAR’s on-track schedule at New Hampshire Motor Speedway this weekend, including a change to Sunday’s Cup race start time.

Carson Hocevar, Spire Motorsports, Premier Security Chevrolet Camaro

Carson Hocevar, Spire Motorsports, Premier Security Chevrolet Camaro

Photo by: Nigel Kinrade / NKP / Motorsport Images

NASCAR scrapped Cup qualifying early on Saturday when rain moved into the area but when a small break came worked feverishly to dry the track in hopes of getting teams some practice time.

As it turned out, teams got on track for just over 4½ minutes before the rain returned and remainder of the 30-minute session was canceled.

In that brief time, Carson Hocevar ended up with the fastest average lap speed at 127.533 mph and completed seven laps, the most anyone was able to finish.

Michael McDowell ended up second quick (127.312 mph) while Brad Keselowski was third (127.214 mph).

William Byron and rookie Zane Smith rounded out the top five.

Shortly after practice was canceled, NASCAR announced it had moved up the start of Sunday’s Cup race about 30 minutes to 2:06 p.m. ET due to expected inclement weather.

The lineup for Sunday’s Cup race was set by the NASCAR performance metric, which has Hendrick driver Chase Elliott on the pole.

Keselowski, who will start in the top 10 on Sunday based on the metric, said the dynamic of this weekend’s race by greatly altered by the weather and NASCAR’s willingness to use wet weather tires.

“We’d rather start on the pole, right, have a shot at that and see us have practice and qualifying,” he said. “But you know it certainly does look like there’s going to be some significant weather adversity throughout the weekend and probably a strong chance that we end up racing on the rain tires at some point.

“That’s going to completely shuffle the grid and make qualifying and all that stuff a little less relevant.”

Keselowski said NASCAR has a difficult challenge to find the “right condition” to utilize the tires.

“If it’s raining too hard and there’s too much water coming down, the visibility goes to zero. We can’t see in the cars, but probably just as important, the TV cameras and the fans can’t see,” he said.

“But if it stops raining and it’s not raining enough, it melts the tires right off the car, very quickly. So, you need like a constant, very low drizzle of rain to be able to make it feasible for the cars to run in the wet.

“They need the perfect weather to do it.”

Read Also:
CLA DRIVER # MANUFACTURER LAPS TIME INTERVAL MPH
1
C. HocevarSPIRE MOTORSPORTS
77 Chevrolet 6

29.865

  127.534
2 M. McDowellFRONT ROW MOTORSPORTS 34 Ford 6

+0.052

29.917

0.052 127.312
3 B. KeselowskiRFK RACING 6 Ford 4

+0.075

29.940

0.023 127.214
4 W. ByronHENDRICK MOTORSPORTS 24 Chevrolet 7

+0.087

29.952

0.012 127.163
5
Z. SmithSPIRE MOTORSPORTS
71 Chevrolet 6

+0.096

29.961

0.009 127.125
6 J. LoganoTEAM PENSKE 22 Ford 7

+0.106

29.971

0.010 127.083
7 D. HamlinJOE GIBBS RACING 11 Toyota 3

+0.110

29.975

0.004 127.066
8 J. BerrySTEWART-HAAS RACING 4 Ford 6

+0.157

30.022

0.047 126.867
9 B. Wallace23XI RACING 23 Toyota 4

+0.181

30.046

0.024 126.766
10 N. GragsonSTEWART-HAAS RACING 10 Ford 6

+0.188

30.053

0.007 126.736
11 C. LajoieSPIRE MOTORSPORTS 7 Chevrolet 4

+0.198

30.063

0.010 126.694
12 R. BlaneyTEAM PENSKE 12 Ford 7

+0.203

30.068

0.005 126.673
13 C. BuescherRFK RACING 17 Ford 6

+0.205

30.070

0.002 126.664
14 K. LarsonHENDRICK MOTORSPORTS 5 Chevrolet 5

+0.205

30.070

0.000 126.664
15 R. ChastainTRACKHOUSE RACING 1 Chevrolet 6

+0.206

30.071

0.001 126.660
16 T. GillilandFRONT ROW MOTORSPORTS 38 Ford 6

+0.269

30.134

0.063 126.395
17
T. GibbsJOE GIBBS RACING
54 Toyota 7

+0.281

30.146

0.012 126.345
18 D. SuarezTRACKHOUSE RACING 99 Chevrolet 5

+0.291

30.156

0.010 126.303
19 C. ElliottHENDRICK MOTORSPORTS 9 Chevrolet 7

+0.297

30.162

0.006 126.278
20 A. CindricTEAM PENSKE 2 Ford 6

+0.307

30.172

0.010 126.236
21 R. PreeceSTEWART-HAAS RACING 41 Ford 6

+0.313

30.178

0.006 126.211
22 A. BowmanHENDRICK MOTORSPORTS 48 Chevrolet 6

+0.335

30.200

0.022 126.119
23 M. Truex JrJOE GIBBS RACING 19 Toyota 4

+0.350

30.215

0.015 126.057
24 C. BriscoeSTEWART-HAAS RACING 14 Ford 6

+0.364

30.229

0.014 125.998
25 R. Stenhouse JrJTG DAUGHERTY RACING 47 Chevrolet 6

+0.373

30.238

0.009 125.961
26 K. BuschRICHARD CHILDRESS RACING 8 Chevrolet 4

+0.395

30.260

0.022 125.869
27 J. HaleyRICK WARE RACING 51 Ford 6

+0.397

30.262

0.002 125.861
28 J. NemechekLEGACY MOTOR CLUB 42 Toyota 6

+0.435

30.300

0.038 125.703
29 T. Reddick23XI RACING 45 Toyota 7

+0.461

30.326

0.026 125.595
30 E. JonesLEGACY MOTOR CLUB 43 Toyota 3

+0.622

30.487

0.161 124.932
31 K. GralaRICK WARE RACING 15 Ford 4

+0.660

30.525

0.038 124.776
32 T. DillonKAULIG RACING 16 Chevrolet 6

+0.704

30.569

0.044 124.597
33 H. BurtonWOOD BROTHERS RACING 21 Ford 6

+0.783

30.648

0.079 124.276
34 A. DillonRICHARD CHILDRESS RACING 3 Chevrolet 4

+1.154

31.019

0.371 122.789
35 D. HemricKAULIG RACING 31 Chevrolet 6

+1.334

31.199

0.180 122.081
36 C. BellJOE GIBBS RACING 20 Toyota 0

 

 

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