Stewart-Haas leads All-Star, Open practice

Stewart-Haas leads All-Star, Open practice

NASCAR

Stewart-Haas leads All-Star, Open practice

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Charlotte Motor Speedway was full of activity Friday afternoon as NASCAR Cup Series teams prepare for All-Star weekend.

Three Stewart-Haas Racing drivers took the top three spots in the combined practice session for the Monster Energy Open and All-Star Race, which kicked off the day. Aric Almirola led the way at 181.360 mph (29.775 seconds) with Kevin Harvick (in the pink “Millennial Car” scheme, pictured) second fastest at 179.581 mph. Clint Bowyer was third quick at 178.915 mph. All three drivers are locked into the All-Star Race.

Completing the top five was Kyle Busch at 178.778 mph and Paul Menard at 178.696 mph. Menard was the only driver competing in the Open race who was in the top 10 on the speed chart. The rest of the top 10 were Ryan Blaney at 178.654 mph, Martin Truex Jr. at 178.566 mph, Joey Logano at 178.518 mph, Austin Dillon at 178.394 mph, and Erik Jones at 178.341 mph.

Brad Keselowski had a power steering issue and only ran five laps. He was last on the leaderboard, 39th, at 158.987 mph.

The 24 drivers who will race in the Monster Energy Open took the track next for their 50-minute final practice. Daniel Hemric led the way at 180.234 mph (29.961 seconds) with Michael McDowell second fastest at 179.539 mph.

Completing the top five were Matt Tifft at 178.998 mph, Kyle Larson at 178.159 mph, and Ty Dillon at 177.690 mph. Filling out the top 10 were David Ragan at 177.655 mph, William Byron at 177.427 mph, Daniel Suarez at 177.363 mph, Chris Buescher at 177.055 mph, and Corey LaJoie at 177.003 mph.

All-Star Race drivers were given 20 minutes of final practice, which was led by Austin Dillon at 179.450 mph. Blaney was second quick at 178.560 mph and Bowyer was third at 178.336 mph.

Logano at 177.954 mph and Denny Hamlin at 177.713 mph completed the top five. They were followed by Harvick at 177.468 mph, Jones at 177.381 mph, Almirola at 177.299 mph, Ryan Newman at 177.241 mph, and Kyle Busch at 176.592 mph.

Drivers locked into the All-Star Race were also given time for pit road practice ahead of their qualifying session. Qualifying for the All-Star Race consists of three laps and a mandatory pit stop.

There were no incidents during any of the on-track sessions.

UP NEXT: Qualifying for the Monster Energy Open at 6 p.m. followed by qualifying for the All-Star Race at 7 p.m. ET.

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