Kahne and Earnhardt lead final practice at Talladega

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Kahne and Earnhardt lead final practice at Talladega
Lee Spencer
By: Lee Spencer
Oct 13, 2017, 8:14 PM

The Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolets of Kasey Kahne, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Chase Elliott posted three of the top-five single-lap speeds in final practice on Friday.

Kahne led the way with a lap of 191.222mph followed by Earnhardt, Kurt Busch, Trevor Bayne, Elliott, Paul Menard, Brad Keselowski, Landon Cassill, Kevin Harvick and Chris Buescher.

“I think we can do well at Talladega,” said Kahne, who completed 13 laps. “Unfortunately, you can’t control everything at Talladega, though. Sometimes you are unlucky and that’s just part of what happens there. We had a strong finish there earlier this year and all we can do is focus on everything we can control.”

With 23 drivers in time out due to practice holds in Happy Hour, only six cars attempted to complete laps in the first 10 minutes of the session.

Kurt Busch led the way with a lap of 189.898mph followed by Menard, Ty Dillon, Cassill, David Ragan and Jeffrey Earnhardt.

Brad Keselowski completed three laps with a top circuit of 187.949mph moved up to fifth.

NASCAR released the first group of drivers with 15-minute practice holds including Austin Dillon, Danica Patrick, Clint Bowyer, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Kyle Busch, Daniel Suarez, Matt Kenseth, DJ Kennington, Chris Buescher, Jimmie Johnson and Michael McDowell. Martin Truex Jr. and AJ Allmendinger.

Truex, Allmendinger, Bowyer and Stenhouse returned to the garage.

Seventeen cars took laps before the 25-minute mark. Kurt Busch retained the top spot, followed by Keselowski (188.645mph), Cassill, Buescher, Logano, Menard, Ty Dillon, Ragan, Austin Dillon, Johnson, Jeffrey Earnhardt, Cole Whitt, Kyle Busch, Danica Patrick, McDowell, and Suarez.

“We’re all good, we’ve been released,” the No. 77 team told Erik Jones, who was one of eight drivers with 30-minute practice holds which also included Jamie McMurray, Harvick, Kahne, Trevor Bayne, Chase Elliott, Matt DiBenedetto and Dale Earnhardt Jr.

“You can release the 6,” said NASCAR radio channel to Bayne. NASCAR released DiBenedetto next.

The Hendrick Motorsports duo of Kahne (191.222mph) and Earnhardt (191.069mph) vaulted to the top of the speed chart in the draft. Kurt Busch dropped to third followed by Elliott, Bayne, Keselowski, Cassill, Harvick, Buescher, Logano, McMurray, Paul Menard, Ty Dillon, Johnson, Kenseth, Suarez, Dillon, Ragan, Jeffrey Earnhardt and Cole Whitt.

“It felt really good,” Kahne said. “Good back to start-finish.”

With 15 minutes remaining, 23 cars had made laps. Kurt Busch’s 15-laps were the most completed. He finished the session with 21 laps on the board.

“Thanks everybody, the car feels sporty,” said Kurt Busch, who remained third of the speed chart. “Thank you.”

Cla#DriverManufacturerLapsTimeGapIntervalMph
1 5 united_states Kasey Kahne  Chevrolet 13 50.078     191.222
2 88 united_states Dale Earnhardt Jr.  Chevrolet 13 50.118 0.040 0.040 191.069
3 41 united_states Kurt Busch  Ford 21 50.332 0.254 0.214 190.257
4 6 united_states Trevor Bayne  Ford 5 50.373 0.295 0.041 190.102
5 24 united_states Chase Elliott  Chevrolet 15 50.472 0.394 0.099 189.729
6 27 united_states Paul Menard  Chevrolet 14 50.532 0.454 0.060 189.504
7 2 united_states Brad Keselowski  Ford 9 50.762 0.684 0.230 188.645
8 34 united_states Landon Cassill  Ford 7 50.766 0.688 0.004 188.630
9 4 united_states Kevin Harvick  Ford 6 50.787 0.709 0.021 188.552
10 37 united_states Chris Buescher  Chevrolet 4 50.792 0.714 0.005 188.534
11 22 united_states Joey Logano  Ford 11 50.830 0.752 0.038 188.393
12 1 united_states Jamie McMurray  Chevrolet 2 50.832 0.754 0.002 188.385
13 13 united_states Ty Dillon  Chevrolet 5 50.871 0.793 0.039 188.241
14 48 united_states Jimmie Johnson  Chevrolet 15 50.944 0.866 0.073 187.971
15 20 united_states Matt Kenseth  Toyota 9 51.081 1.003 0.137 187.467
16 19 mexico Daniel Suarez  Toyota 9 51.104 1.026 0.023 187.383
17 3 united_states Austin Dillon  Chevrolet 15 51.116 1.038 0.012 187.339
18 38 united_states David Ragan  Ford 10 51.130 1.052 0.014 187.287
19 33 united_states Jeffrey Earnhardt  Chevrolet 12 51.880 1.802 0.750 184.580
20 72 united_states Cole Whitt  Chevrolet 13 52.300 2.222 0.420 183.098
21 18 united_states Kyle Busch  Toyota 3 59.164 9.086 6.864 161.855
22 10 united_states Danica Patrick  Ford 2 59.296 9.218 0.132 161.495
23 95 united_states Michael McDowell  Chevrolet 3 59.712 9.634 0.416 160.370
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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Talladega II
Location Talladega Superspeedway
Drivers Kasey Kahne
Teams Hendrick Motorsports
Author Lee Spencer
Article type Practice report