Pole-sitter Ryan Blaney paces final practice at Las Vegas

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Pole-sitter Ryan Blaney paces final practice at Las Vegas
Jim Utter
By: Jim Utter
Mar 3, 2018, 8:26 PM

Ryan Blaney and Kyle Larson continued to show the way in Saturday’s final Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice session.

Ryan Blaney, Team Penske, Ford Fusion Menards / Pennzoil
Polesitter Ryan Blaney, Team Penske, Ford Fusion Menards / Pennzoil
Ryan Blaney, Team Penske, Ford Fusion Menards / Pennzoil
Ryan Blaney, Team Penske, Ford Fusion Menards / Pennzoil
Kyle Larson, Chip Ganassi Racing, Chevrolet Camaro Credit One Bank
Brad Keselowski, Team Penske, Ford Fusion Discount Tire

Blaney, who won the pole for Sunday’s Pennzoil 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, topped the leaderboard in the final practice with an average lap speed of 186.445 mph.

Close behind at 186.136 mph was Kyle Larson, who was fastest in Friday’s practice session and Saturday morning’s first session.

“We have always done pretty well here with hitting the set-ups right. I like this place,” Blaney said. “It is just a combination of everyone working hard and Ford. It just shows the speed we have had all weekend, not just our car, but everybody.

“It would be really nice to get a win here early in the season and get everything started off on the right foot here this first stint before the first break.”

Reigning series champion and last year’s Las Vegas race winner, Martin Truex Jr., ended up third-fastest. Chase Elliott was fourth and rookie William Byron completed the top-five.

Rounding out the top 10 were Ryan Newman, Brad Keselowski, Daniel Suarez, Joey Logano and Erik Jones.

Keselowski was among several drivers who commented about the windy conditions during the session.

“Tell you what, this place is a handful with that wind,” Keselowski said after completing a run. He completed the most laps (55) during the 50-minute session.

Aric Almirola, Kyle Busch and Chris Buescher were all held out of the final 15 minutes of the practice session for failing pre-qualifying inspection twice on Friday.

Larson was the fastest among the drivers who completed at least 10 consecutive laps, with an average lap speed of 183.935 mph. He was followed by Kevin Harvick, Truex, Keselowski and Elliott.

Cla#DriverManufacturerLapsTimeGapIntervalMph
1 12 united_states Ryan Blaney  Ford 34 28.963     186.445
2 42 united_states Kyle Larson  Chevrolet 44 29.011 0.048 0.048 186.136
3 78 united_states Martin Truex Jr.  Toyota 28 29.018 0.055 0.007 186.091
4 9 united_states Chase Elliott  Chevrolet 31 29.023 0.060 0.005 186.059
5 24 united_states William Byron  Chevrolet 35 29.032 0.069 0.009 186.002
6 31 united_states Ryan Newman  Chevrolet 38 29.034 0.071 0.002 185.989
7 2 united_states Brad Keselowski  Ford 55 29.066 0.103 0.032 185.784
8 19 mexico Daniel Suarez  Toyota 33 29.076 0.113 0.010 185.720
9 22 united_states Joey Logano  Ford 47 29.102 0.139 0.026 185.554
10 20 united_states Erik Jones  Toyota 44 29.114 0.151 0.012 185.478
11 11 united_states Denny Hamlin  Toyota 39 29.150 0.187 0.036 185.249
12 10 united_states Aric Almirola  Ford 39 29.151 0.188 0.001 185.242
13 37 united_states Chris Buescher  Chevrolet 23 29.155 0.192 0.004 185.217
14 4 united_states Kevin Harvick  Ford 47 29.184 0.221 0.029 185.033
15 18 united_states Kyle Busch  Toyota 29 29.199 0.236 0.015 184.938
16 14 united_states Clint Bowyer  Ford 41 29.213 0.250 0.014 184.849
17 1 united_states Jamie McMurray  Chevrolet 46 29.231 0.268 0.018 184.735
18 48 united_states Jimmie Johnson  Chevrolet 30 29.243 0.280 0.012 184.660
19 95 united_states Kasey Kahne  Chevrolet 36 29.263 0.300 0.020 184.533
20 3 united_states Austin Dillon  Chevrolet 30 29.267 0.304 0.004 184.508
21 17 united_states Ricky Stenhouse Jr.  Ford 29 29.296 0.333 0.029 184.326
22 6 united_states Trevor Bayne  Ford 31 29.310 0.347 0.014 184.237
23 88 united_states Alex Bowman  Chevrolet 40 29.325 0.362 0.015 184.143
24 43 united_states Darrell Wallace Jr.  Chevrolet 39 29.344 0.381 0.019 184.024
25 51 united_states Cole Custer  Chevrolet 42 29.352 0.389 0.008 183.974
26 47 united_states A.J. Allmendinger  Chevrolet 25 29.372 0.409 0.020 183.849
27 41 united_states Kurt Busch  Ford 48 29.407 0.444 0.035 183.630
28 21 united_states Paul Menard  Ford 37 29.429 0.466 0.022 183.492
29 34 united_states Michael McDowell  Ford 37 29.580 0.617 0.151 182.556
30 38 united_states David Ragan  Ford 36 29.580 0.617 0.000 182.556
31 13 united_states Ty Dillon  Chevrolet 43 29.608 0.645 0.028 182.383
32 32 united_states Matt DiBenedetto  Ford 23 29.774 0.811 0.166 181.366
33 72 united_states Cole Whitt  Chevrolet 20 30.013 1.050 0.239 179.922
34 15 united_states Ross Chastain  Chevrolet 22 30.269 1.306 0.256 178.400
35 00 united_states Jeffrey Earnhardt  Chevrolet 16 30.716 1.753 0.447 175.804
36 23 united_states Gray Gaulding  Toyota 8 30.934 1.971 0.218 174.565
37 55 united_states Joey Gase  Chevrolet 16 31.588 2.625 0.654 170.951

 

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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Las Vegas
Location Las Vegas Motor Speedway
Drivers Ryan Blaney
Teams Team Penske
Author Jim Utter
Article type Practice report