Penske Fords pace Phoenix NASCAR practice

Image by Thacker/LAT

Penske Fords pace Phoenix NASCAR practice


Penske Fords pace Phoenix NASCAR practice


Team Penske Ford drivers Ryan Blaney and Brad Keselowski led the way in the opening Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice at ISM Raceway.

With only one practice session ahead of Friday evening qualifying, teams spent the 50 minutes focused primarily on qualifying set up and runs. Blaney paced the session at 141.716 mph with Keselowski clocking 140.680 mph on his quick lap.

Completing the top five were the Chevrolets of Kyle Larson (140.406 mph) and Chase Elliott (140.367), and Kyle Busch’s Toyota (140.329).

Busch was the most recent winner at ISM, claiming the Cup series victory at the Phoenix, Ariz.-outskirts facility last fall.

Completing the top 10 were Jimmie Johnson (140.198), Alex Bowman (139.980), Erik Jones (139.958), Martin Truex Jr. (139.898) and Matt DiBenedetto at 139.800 mph.

DiBenedetto’s Toyota sat squarely inside the top 10 on the speed through the entire session, atop the leaderboard early in the going and one to watch in qualifying.

Defending race winner Kevin Harvick was 14th fastest at 139.546 mph.

Teams are not running the full rules package this weekend, limited to 750 horsepower and no aero ducts. Opening session speeds were impressive: Last year, the fastest lap in the Friday practice was 138.281 mph.

UP NEXT: Qualifying at 6:10 p.m. ET on Fox Sports 1.