Newman fastest in final practice

Ryan Newman was fastest in Winston Cup final practice for the season finale event at Homestead Miami Speedway. Newman, who leads the series in wins and poles, turned a lap of 178.247 mph. Newman looks to improve his finishing order in ...

Ryan Newman was fastest in Winston Cup final practice for the season finale event at Homestead Miami Speedway. Newman, who leads the series in wins and poles, turned a lap of 178.247 mph.

Newman looks to improve his finishing order in championship standings this weekend with a strong finish, "I really don't know what to predict for tomorrow yet.I know Matt (Borland) and the team will get the car as close to perfect as they can for tomorrow. It should be a good race, and we'd sure like to win another one and close out the season in style."

Newman sits fourth in rankings, 65 points out of third, and 113 points shy of second place.

Ward Burton was second fastest followed by Tony Stewart, Johnny Benson, Michael Waltrip and Jeff Gordon.

Pole sitter Jamie McMurray was seventh with a lap of 176.548 mph, while Greg Biffle and Bill Elliott earned eighth and ninth fastest on the speed chart.

Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was 10th quickest while the man he's chasing for second place in series points, Jimmie Johnson was 14th fastest.

Johnson starts 10th on Sunday, while Earnhardt takes the green flag from 39th.

The two are locked in a battle for second and third in the championship. Monetarily, the difference in positions is worth around $500,000.

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Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Ward Burton , Bill Elliott , Jeff Gordon , Tony Stewart , Michael Waltrip , Greg Biffle , Ryan Newman , Johnny Benson , Jimmie Johnson , Jamie McMurray