Joe Gibbs Racing Tops Practice Sessions in Dover

Saturday, May 14 2275

Much like all season long, Joe Gibbs Racing was quick on track in preparation for the main event. In the first session it was Kyle Busch who was quickest.

Practice One:

Busch was the fast car out on track in the opening practice Saturday morning. The No. 18 laid down an early lap of 157.839 mph, which is just less than eight mph slower than the quick time on Friday.

Two of his JGR teammates were right behind him on speed. Denny Hamlin posted an early lap of 157.356 mph. Carl Edwards was third at 157.006 mph, just over a tenth of a second off the fast lap.

Ryan Newman was fourth in the session at 156.770 mph and Kurt Busch rounded out the top five 156.590 mph.

Pole-sitter, Kevin Harvick was 10th fastest in the session at 156.413 mph. The No. 4 team dominated the race in the fall leading 355 of the 400 laps.

10-time Dover winner, Jimmie Johnson was 12th on the board, while his Hendrick Motorsports teammate, Chase Elliott was eighth, quickest of all the rookie drivers.

The fourth JGR driver, Matt Kenseth recorded the 19th best time. He was just over three-tenths of a second off the top time. After being involved in a big practice crash on Friday, Danica Patrick led the way of drivers in backup cars with the 25th quickest time. Jamie McMurray was just behind in 26th and Tony Stewart was mired down in 34th.

Practice Two:

Hamlin led the way at a lap of 157.329 mph. In the past Dover has been the Achilles heel for the No. 11 team, but he has been fast all weekend long.

Harvick rebounded from the first practice to lay down the second quickest lap in the second session. He ran a speed of 156.447 mph which was over a tenth of a second behind the hot lap that Hamlin put down.

The younger Busch brother was third fast at 156.365 mph, with his older brother in fourth at 155.777 mph. Elliott rounded out the top five on the board at 155.696 mph.

Kenseth improved on the morning session and went to eighth in race conditions.

Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was down to 25th on the leader board. The No. 88 car will start on the outside of the front row when the green flag waves, but struggled Saturday in race conditions.

McMurray ran 62 laps in the session, most out of the 39 drivers that completed a lap. The No. 1 machine struggled in his backup car prior to this practice that he ended in 17th.

The last time NASCAR was at the Monster Mile, McMurray finished fourth at Dover and finished one position shy of making it into the next round of the Chase.

The green flag will wave shortly after 1:00 p.m. on Sunday. Johnson is the defending winner of the event.

Dustin Albino

Dustin is a 20-year-old, currently studying journalism at Ithaca College. Albino has always wanted to report on NASCAR and beginning at the end of 2014 that is exactly what he did with Speedway Digest. Since that time he has become well-known around the garage area and is looking to attend even more races than he did in 2015. 

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