Bowyer leads first Sonoma practice

Image courtesy of Stewart-Haas Racing

Bowyer leads first Sonoma practice

NASCAR

Bowyer leads first Sonoma practice

Clint Bowyer was fastest in the first of two Friday practice sessions in preparation of the season’s first road course race.

Getting around Sonoma Raceway at 93.590mph, Bowyer topped the leaderboard over Ryan Blaney. Bowyer also topped the best five consecutive lap averages. The best lap for Blaney was 93.546mph.

Completing the top five were Joey Logano at 93.172mph, Jamie McMurray at 93.049mph and Daniel Suarez at 92.746mph. The rest of the top 10 were Jimmie Johnson (92.661mph), Michael McDowell (92.650mph), Martin Truex Jr. (92.614mph), AJ Allmendinger (92.596mph) and Ryan Newman (92.595mph). Road racing is a strength of both McDowell and Allmendinger, making their speed no surprise.

There was one debris caution during the 1 hour, 15-minute session when parts flew out from under the No. 52 car of Cody Ware.

Erik Jones and Darrell Wallace Jr. both went off course during practice but avoided contact. Kasey Kahne spun in Turn 3, yet also avoided making any contact.

Paul Menard damaged the right front of his car when he hit the tire barrels in Turn 11. Menard told his team over the radio, “I changed my line for 11, and I just got too close to the damn tires.”

Kyle Busch, Kyle Larson, and Kahne also served 15-minute practice penalties due to their cars failing pre-race inspection twice at the previous Cup Series race at Michigan.

David Ragan served 30-minutes for his car failing pre-race inspection three times.

UP NEXT: Final practice at 5:40 p.m. ET.

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