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Practice report
NASCAR Cup Chicago Street Course

Van Gisbergen leads Hamlin and Button in Chicago Cup practice

NASCAR newcomer Shane Van Gisbergen was the surprise leader in Saturday’s NASCAR Cup practice at the inaugural Chicago Street Course.

Shane van Gisbergen, Triple Eight Race Engineering Chevrolet Camaro ZL1

Van Gisbergen, the three-time Australian Supercars champion making his Cup debut this weekend in the No. 91 Trackhouse Racing Chevrolet, set a blistering pace throughout the 50-minute session.

The Kiwi remained at the top of the speed charts for most of the practice and set his best average lap speed of 88.571 mph in the final minutes.

Cup veteran Denny Hamlin ended up second-fastest (88.262 mph) and former Formula 1 World champion Jenson Button was third (88.260 mph) driving the No. 15 Ford fielded by Rick Ware Racing and Stewart-Haas Racing.

Martin Truex Jr. was fourth and Christopher Bell fifth as Toyotas claimed three of the top-five spots.

Completing the top-10 were Kyle Larson, Corey LaJoie, Tyler Reddick, Ty Gibbs and Brad Keselowski.

Saturday’s practice was the first for the Cup series on a street course, a 2.2-mile, 12-turn course erected in the Grant Park area of downtown Chicago.

Almost 18 minutes into the practice, William Byron hit the wall in Turn 4 with the left-rear of his No. 24 Chevrolet and limped his way back to pit road.

About 30 minutes into the session, NASCAR displayed a caution when Austin Cindric spun and tagged the wall and dropped debris on the track. Ross Chastain went into the run-off area in Turn 4 but had no other problems.

Minutes after the practice restarted, Ricky Stenhouse Jr. slammed into the Turn 8 wall in his No. 47 Chevrolet but was able to make it back to pit road for repairs.

 

“I felt pretty good on the first half of the track, went to (Turns) 7 and 8 and back to (Turn) 12 is where I was losing a little bit of speed and I was just trying to push it a little bit in those areas,” Stenhouse said.

“I turned in a little too early in Turn 8, clipped the inside wall and then got the outside wall there. A little suspension damage – not sure how much yet.”

Minutes later, Justin Haley slid into the tire barriers in Turn 4 but was able to continue on without the need of a caution.

Cla # Driver Manufacturer Laps Time Gap Interval Mph
1 91 New Zealand Shane van Gisbergen Chevrolet 21 1'29.419     88.572
2 11 United States Denny Hamlin Toyota 24 1'29.732 0.313 0.313 88.263
3 15 United Kingdom Jenson Button Ford 21 1'29.734 0.315 0.002 88.261
4 19 United States Martin Truex Jr. Toyota 19 1'29.845 0.426 0.111 88.152
5 20 United States Christopher Bell Toyota 20 1'30.067 0.648 0.222 87.935
6 5 United States Kyle Larson Chevrolet 18 1'30.181 0.762 0.114 87.823
7 7 United States Corey Lajoie Chevrolet 21 1'30.457 1.038 0.276 87.555
8 45 United States Tyler Reddick Toyota 24 1'30.548 1.129 0.091 87.467
9 54 Ty Gibbs Toyota 15 1'30.563 1.144 0.015 87.453
10 6 United States Brad Keselowski Ford 18 1'30.682 1.263 0.119 87.338
11 99 Mexico Daniel Suarez Chevrolet 19 1'30.726 1.307 0.044 87.296
12 42 United States Noah Gragson Chevrolet 11 1'30.746 1.327 0.020 87.277
13 16 United States A.J. Allmendinger Chevrolet 18 1'30.838 1.419 0.092 87.188
14 24 United States William Byron Chevrolet 18 1'30.864 1.445 0.026 87.163
15 34 United States Michael McDowell Ford 19 1'30.866 1.447 0.002 87.161
16 12 United States Ryan Blaney Ford 20 1'30.884 1.465 0.018 87.144
17 3 United States Austin Dillon Chevrolet 22 1'30.944 1.525 0.060 87.087
18 17 United States Chris Buescher Ford 23 1'30.984 1.565 0.040 87.048
19 8 United States Kyle Busch Chevrolet 21 1'31.074 1.655 0.090 86.962
20 9 United States Chase Elliott Chevrolet 19 1'31.102 1.683 0.028 86.936
21 38 United States Todd Gilliland Ford 14 1'31.148 1.729 0.046 86.892
22 14 United States Chase Briscoe Ford 20 1'31.169 1.750 0.021 86.872
23 22 United States Joey Logano Ford 24 1'31.174 1.755 0.005 86.867
24 41 United States Ryan Preece Ford 20 1'31.224 1.805 0.050 86.819
25 23 United States Bubba Wallace Toyota 22 1'31.258 1.839 0.034 86.787
26 31 United States Justin Haley Chevrolet 19 1'31.416 1.997 0.158 86.637
27 48 United States Alex Bowman Chevrolet 23 1'31.416 1.997 0.000 86.637
28 43 United States Erik Jones Chevrolet 15 1'31.617 2.198 0.201 86.447
29 10 United States Aric Almirola Ford 21 1'31.740 2.321 0.123 86.331
30 1 United States Ross Chastain Chevrolet 19 1'31.784 2.365 0.044 86.290
31 2 United States Austin Cindric Ford 11 1'31.910 2.491 0.126 86.171
32 51 United States Andy Lally Ford 22 1'31.915 2.496 0.005 86.167
33 4 United States Kevin Harvick Ford 23 1'32.011 2.592 0.096 86.077
34 77 United States Ty Dillon Chevrolet 24 1'32.047 2.628 0.036 86.043
35 47 United States Ricky Stenhouse Jr. Chevrolet 10 1'32.163 2.744 0.116 85.935
36 78 United States Josh Bilicki Chevrolet 19 1'32.235 2.816 0.072 85.868
37 21 United States Harrison Burton Ford 20 1'32.254 2.835 0.019 85.850

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