NASCAR Xfinity and Truck teams get valuable test time at Charlotte

Ryan Blaney led the way in Tuesday’s open NASCAR Xfinity Series test at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

NASCAR Xfinity and Truck teams get valuable test time at Charlotte
Ryan Blaney, Team Penske Ford
Travis Pastrana, Niece Motorsports Chevrolet
Daniel Hemric, Brandon Jones, Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet
Erik Jones, Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota
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The NASCAR Xfinity and Camping World Truck Series held a pair of tests Tuesday in Charlotte in preparation for this month's upcoming race weekend at the 1.5-mile track.

Blaney topped the practice sessions driving his Team Penske Ford to a fast time of 29.254 seconds (184.590 mph). Brandon Jones followed in second at (29.424/183.524 mph) with Tyler Reddick third. Elliott Sadler and Brennan Poole completed the top five.

Rookie William Byron was sixth with Cole Custer, Erik Jones, Matt Tifft and Darrell Wallace Jr. rounding out the top 10.

“It’s good to be out here,” said Blaney, who completed made 88 laps during the two sessions. “This track is tough and it changes a lot throughout the day. You can try things that you can’t try during a race weekend.

“We’re working on our cars and trying to get them back to where we were a couple of years ago. The day went fairly well, which is encouraging.”

Trucks make most of test

Noah Gragson got off to a fast start leading the first practice session for the Trucks, turning a fast time of 30.729 seconds (175.730 mph). Myatt Snider also made the most of his first time on the CMS oval with the second-best time of (30.757 seconds/175.570mph). Ryan Truex clocked in third.

Christopher Bell, who has already picked up a win this season at Atlanta Motor Speedway, was fourth fastest while Grant Enfinger completed the top five in the early afternoon session.

Among the estimated 20 drivers participating in the test session was defending race winner Matt Crafton, who appreciated the time on the track, especially during the evening to match the time the N.C. Education Lottery 200 will run on May 19.

“It’s good that this test goes from the day into the night because this race track changes more than any track we go to,” Crafton said. “I’m really glad about this test. We use it to work on our 1.5-mile program.”

Defending series champion Johnny Sauter, agreed with Crafton.

“Coming here to test is something that I look forward to,” Sauter said. “I think (the strategy is) similar for everybody to come here. … There are things that are unique about Charlotte versus other 1.5-mile race tracks and maybe you can hit on some of those sweet spots for here.”

The Xfinity Series returns to action this Saturday at Talladega Superspeedway while the Trucks are off until next Friday at Kansas Speedway.

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