Truex leads final practice at Loudon, Logano forced to sit out session

Martin Truex Jr. topped final practice at New Hampshire with a lap of 131.647mph.

Truex completed 27 laps despite an abbreviated session for the No. 78 Furniture Row Racing team which served a 30-minute penalty due to failing inspection prior to Saturday.

Kevin Harvick posted the second-fastest single-lap speed followed by Kyle Larson, Daniel Suarez, Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney, Jimmie Johnson (in a back up car), Dale Earnhardt Jr., Denny Hamlin and Clint Bowyer.

Kyle Busch set the early pace in Happy Hour with a lap of 131.451mph in the first two minutes. Larson, who finished second here in July after starting from the rear of the field, ran second (131.447mph) followed by Blaney (131.302mph), Clint Bowyer (131.008mph) and Dale Earnhardt Jr. (130.878mph).

“We’ve got decent speed,” Blaney said. “I thought our speed on the short run was pretty good and we ran not a ton of laps in a row, but I thought our long-run speed was OK. It’s just a matter of preparing for the race track changing.”

Four minutes in, Denny Hamlin bumped Earnhardt out of the top five with a lap of 130.396mph. Kenseth (130.869mph) ran seventh followed by Kurt Busch (130.864mph), Keselowski (130.864mph) and Trevor Bayne (130.389mph).

Twenty-four drivers completed laps in final practice in the first 10-minutes. Larson topped the board with a lap of 131.497mph followed by Kyle Busch, Blaney, Earnhardt, Bowyer, Hamlin, Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Keselowski, Kahne, Austin Dillon, Bayne, AJ Allmendinger, Chris Buescher and Paul Menard.

NASCAR released the 15-minute practice holds: Kevin Harvick, Danica Patrick, Ty Dillon, Corey LaJoie, Chase Elliott, Ryan Newman, Matt DiBenedetto, David Ragan and Jimmie Johnson for failing pre-race inspection at New Hampshire.

Larson held the top spot once the cars were released. Harvick was the only driver to crack the top-five with a speed of 131.488mph on his fourth lap, which was good enough for second. Harvick bumped Larson on his sixth lap with a speed of 131.633mph. Three minutes after being released, Johnson jumped up to fifth (131.121mph) after six laps.

Following the first 20-minutes, Harvick was leading the sessions followed by Larson, Kyle Busch, Blaney, Johnson, Earnhardt, Bowyer, Hamlin, Keselowski and Kenseth. Kurt Busch, Kahne, Austin Dillon, Bayne, Menard, Patrick, Ty Dillon, Newman, Allmendinger and Buescher rounded out the top 20.

Harvick led the top-five speeds at the 25-minute mark followed by Kyle Busch, Larson, Blaney, Johnson, Earnhardt, Bowyer, Hamlin, Kahne and Keselowski. Elliott, Kenseth, Kurt Busch, Austin Dillon and Bayne completed the top-15 single-lap speeds.

Ty Dillon hit the wall and the team was forced to pull out the back-up No. 13 Chevy. He was evaluated and released from the infield care center.

Thirty minutes in, the Kyle’s had both completed a session-high 35 laps.

Jamie McMurray and Martin Truex Jr., were released from their 30-minute holds for failing pre-race inspection three times at Chicagoland. Daniel Suarez and Erik Jones joined the session after their timeout was lifted. Both the Nos. 19 and 77 Toyotas were busted twice at Chicagoland for failing pre-race inspection and twice at New Hampshire for failing pre-qualifying inspection.

In four laps, Truex vaulted to P3 with a lap of 131.501mph. Suarez raced up to third in the first five minutes. He bumped Truex for third with a lap of 131.506mph after five of six laps.

Truex posted the fastest speed 45-minutes into the session after 16 laps (131.647mph). Harvick was second followed by Kyle Busch, Suarez and Larson, who had completed a session-high 69 laps. Blaney, Johnson, Earnhardt, Hamlin and Bowyer rounded out the top 10.

Joey Logano, who served a 50-minute penalty on pit road in 76-degree weather, rode around the Magic Mile as NASCAR waved the red flag signaling the end of practice.

Logano’s team failed pre-qualifying inspection four times on Friday. He never made a lap in time trials and will start from the rear for Sunday’s ISM Connect 300. 

Cla#DriverManufacturerLapsTimeGapIntervalMph
1 78 united_states Martin Truex Jr.  Toyota 27 28.932     131.647
2 4 united_states Kevin Harvick  Ford 40 28.935 0.003 0.003 131.633
3 18 united_states Kyle Busch  Toyota 51 28.961 0.029 0.026 131.515
4 19 mexico Daniel Suarez  Toyota 33 28.963 0.031 0.002 131.506
5 42 united_states Kyle Larson  Chevrolet 70 28.965 0.033 0.002 131.497
6 21 united_states Ryan Blaney  Ford 53 29.008 0.076 0.043 131.302
7 48 united_states Jimmie Johnson  Chevrolet 33 29.048 0.116 0.040 131.121
8 88 united_states Dale Earnhardt Jr.  Chevrolet 48 29.050 0.118 0.002 131.112
9 11 united_states Denny Hamlin  Toyota 57 29.069 0.137 0.019 131.026
10 14 united_states Clint Bowyer  Ford 44 29.073 0.141 0.004 131.008
11 5 united_states Kasey Kahne  Chevrolet 56 29.097 0.165 0.024 130.900
12 2 united_states Brad Keselowski  Ford 53 29.099 0.167 0.002 130.891
13 24 united_states Chase Elliott  Chevrolet 30 29.099 0.167 0.000 130.891
14 20 united_states Matt Kenseth  Toyota 48 29.104 0.172 0.005 130.869
15 41 united_states Kurt Busch  Ford 48 29.105 0.173 0.001 130.864
16 1 united_states Jamie McMurray  Chevrolet 21 29.119 0.187 0.014 130.801
17 77 united_states Erik Jones  Toyota 26 29.162 0.230 0.043 130.608
18 3 united_states Austin Dillon  Chevrolet 49 29.196 0.264 0.034 130.456
19 6 united_states Trevor Bayne  Ford 27 29.211 0.279 0.015 130.389
20 27 united_states Paul Menard  Chevrolet 36 29.222 0.290 0.011 130.340
21 10 united_states Danica Patrick  Ford 42 29.252 0.320 0.030 130.206
22 17 united_states Ricky Stenhouse Jr.  Ford 59 29.313 0.381 0.061 129.936
23 37 united_states Chris Buescher  Chevrolet 42 29.324 0.392 0.011 129.887
24 13 united_states Ty Dillon  Chevrolet 17 29.337 0.405 0.013 129.829
25 31 united_states Ryan Newman  Chevrolet 39 29.341 0.409 0.004 129.812
26 47 united_states A.J. Allmendinger  Chevrolet 35 29.396 0.464 0.055 129.569
27 34 united_states Landon Cassill  Ford 41 29.467 0.535 0.071 129.256
28 32 united_states Matt DiBenedetto  Ford 27 29.484 0.552 0.017 129.182
29 43 united_states Aric Almirola  Ford 26 29.485 0.553 0.001 129.178
30 38 united_states David Ragan  Ford 30 29.582 0.650 0.097 128.754
31 95 united_states Michael McDowell  Chevrolet 31 29.584 0.652 0.002 128.745
32 15 united_states Reed Sorenson  Chevrolet 34 29.590 0.658 0.006 128.719
33 83 united_states Brett Moffitt  Toyota 24 29.641 0.709 0.051 128.498
34 23 united_states Corey Lajoie  Toyota 22 29.712 0.780 0.071 128.191
35 72 united_states Cole Whitt  Chevrolet 26 29.858 0.926 0.146 127.564
36 55 united_states Gray Gaulding  Toyota 24 30.159 1.227 0.301 126.291
37 33 united_states Jeffrey Earnhardt  Chevrolet 25 30.172 1.240 0.013 126.236
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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Event Loudon II
Track New Hampshire Motor Speedway
Drivers Martin Truex Jr.
Teams Furniture Row Racing
Article type Practice report