Newman fastest in Richmond practice

Ryan Newman turned the fastest time at Richmond International Raceway with a lap of 127.232 mph. It was pretty impressive considering Newman wrecked his primary car early in the session and had to yank out the back-up. Newman desperately needs...

Ryan Newman turned the fastest time at Richmond International Raceway with a lap of 127.232 mph. It was pretty impressive considering Newman wrecked his primary car early in the session and had to yank out the back-up.

Newman desperately needs to run well this weekend. Currently, he sits 11th in rankings just one measly point out of the championship 'Chase' field.

"We'll just do our best to win this Saturday night," Newman said. "Hopefully we can pull a Jeremy Mayfield on all of them, winning the race and securing us a spot in the Chase. Last year was a nail-biter and it looks like this year will be, too."

Greg Biffle was second with a lap of 126.481 mph. Biffle has already locked a spot in the 'Chase'.

"If you talk to a lot of the drivers, I think most of them will tell you that Richmond is one of their favorite tracks," Biffle commented. "It's just a driver's track. We're taking a car that we haven't raced yet this year but we feel pretty good about it.

"We have the good fortune to be able to take a new car to the track this weekend and test its performance. Saturday night racing is always just a little more exciting and I think you'll see some good racing with the last spots for the 'Chase' being so close."

Reigning series champion Kurt Busch was third with a lap of 126.215 mph. Busch also has already secured a spot in the 'Chase' line-up.

"It feels like we've had about anything that can go wrong happen at Richmond," said Busch. "Earlier this year we were leading here late in the race when we had a lug nut get caught in the brakes and put us a lap down.

"Last year in the spring it was an alternator belt that broke when we were leading that took us out of contention, and then in the fall last year we were leading at the end before fuel strategy cost us the win. But Richmond is a terrific racetrack."

Rusty Wallace and part-time Cupper Johnny Sauter complete the top five.

Of those struggling for the final spots in the 'Chase': Carl Edwards was 28th, Matt Kenseth, 6th, Jamie McMurray, 31rst, Jeff Gordon, 10th and Elliott Sadler 29th.

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Jeff Gordon , Matt Kenseth , Jeremy Mayfield , Rusty Wallace , Greg Biffle , Kurt Busch , Ryan Newman , Jamie McMurray , Johnny Sauter , Carl Edwards , Elliott Sadler