Clint Bowyer leads final Cup practice, Kyle Busch wrecks

Clint Bowyer continued to show his No. 14 Ford’s speed in Saturday’s final NASCAR Cup Series practice at Atlanta.

Clint Bowyer leads final Cup practice, Kyle Busch wrecks
Clint Bowyer, Stewart-Haas Racing, Ford Mustang Haas Automation
Clint Bowyer, Stewart-Haas Racing, Ford Mustang Haas Automation
Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry Snickers Creamy
Kyle Busch, Joe Gibbs Racing, Toyota Camry Snickers Creamy

Bowyer, who was fastest in Friday’s practice and was fastest in two of three rounds of qualifying, led the way Saturday with an average lap speed of 179.104 mph.

Kyle Busch ended up second (178.873 mph) and Austin Dillon was third (178.712 mph). Michael McDowell was fourth and Corey LaJoie completed the top-five.

“Just got loose. We were trying to run a run and the car was pretty good with fire off there," Busch said. "We ran some really good times and then just kept getting a little bit looser, a little bit looser. I tried to go back to the bottom and run the bottom to see how slow I had to be to go around the bottom and just snapped.”

Rounding out the Top 10 were Kurt Busch, Joey Logano, Daniel Hemric, Ryan Newman and Martin Truex Jr.

Shortly into the start of Saturday’s session – which got underway with fog and mist in the air – Kyle Busch got loose in Turn 2 and hit the wall. His team immediately began bringing out his backup car and begin preparations.

Since he moved to a backup car, Busch will have to start Sunday’s race from the rear of the field.

 

With about 42 minutes left in the session, smoke began billowing out of the No. 20 Toyota of Erik Jones and he immediately took his car to the garage, where it was reported he was suffering a power steering problem.

Keselowski, who sat out the start of practice suffering from flu-like symptoms, suited up and got in his No. 2 Ford with about 20 minutes left in the session and ran about two laps on the track.

Kyle Busch had the fastest average speed among the drivers who ran at least 10 consecutive laps (177.302 mph). Kyle Larson and Truex were second and third, respectively, in that category.

Cla # Driver Manufacturer Laps Time Gap Interval Mph
1 14 United States Clint Bowyer  Ford 35 30.954     179.104
2 18 United States Kyle Busch  Toyota 12 30.994 0.040 0.040 178.873
3 3 United States Austin Dillon  Chevrolet 52 31.022 0.068 0.028 178.712
4 34 United States Michael McDowell  Ford 29 31.029 0.075 0.007 178.672
5 32 United States Corey Lajoie  Ford 32 31.070 0.116 0.041 178.436
6 1 United States Kurt Busch  Chevrolet 58 31.143 0.189 0.073 178.018
7 22 United States Joey Logano  Ford 52 31.183 0.229 0.040 177.789
8 8 United States Daniel Hemric  Chevrolet 49 31.184 0.230 0.001 177.783
9 6 United States Ryan Newman  Ford 39 31.229 0.275 0.045 177.527
10 19 United States Martin Truex Jr.  Toyota 54 31.237 0.283 0.008 177.482
11 88 United States Alex Bowman  Chevrolet 55 31.242 0.288 0.005 177.453
12 12 United States Ryan Blaney  Ford 43 31.242 0.288 0.000 177.453
13 10 United States Aric Almirola  Ford 57 31.248 0.294 0.006 177.419
14 24 United States William Byron  Chevrolet 34 31.264 0.310 0.016 177.329
15 13 United States Ty Dillon  Chevrolet 49 31.267 0.313 0.003 177.312
16 21 United States Paul Menard  Ford 55 31.270 0.316 0.003 177.295
17 42 United States Kyle Larson  Chevrolet 51 31.273 0.319 0.003 177.278
18 95 United States Matt DiBenedetto  Toyota 56 31.317 0.363 0.044 177.028
19 37 United States Chris Buescher  Chevrolet 43 31.322 0.368 0.005 177.000
20 17 United States Ricky Stenhouse Jr.  Ford 52 31.327 0.373 0.005 176.972
21 4 United States Kevin Harvick  Ford 75 31.334 0.380 0.007 176.932
22 41 Mexico Daniel Suarez  Ford 55 31.334 0.380 0.000 176.932
23 96 United States Parker Kligerman  Toyota 38 31.335 0.381 0.001 176.927
24 20 United States Erik Jones  Toyota 20 31.343 0.389 0.008 176.882
25 47 United States Ryan Preece  Chevrolet 62 31.351 0.397 0.008 176.836
26 11 United States Denny Hamlin  Toyota 44 31.393 0.439 0.042 176.600
27 48 United States Jimmie Johnson  Chevrolet 54 31.416 0.462 0.023 176.471
28 2 United States Brad Keselowski  Ford 36 31.427 0.473 0.011 176.409
29 9 United States Chase Elliott  Chevrolet 68 31.430 0.476 0.003 176.392
30 38 United States David Ragan  Ford 43 31.465 0.511 0.035 176.196
31 43 United States Darrell Wallace Jr.  Chevrolet 35 31.513 0.559 0.048 175.927
32 36 United States Matt Tifft  Ford 15 31.645 0.691 0.132 175.194
33 15 United States Ross Chastain  Chevrolet 23 31.889 0.935 0.244 173.853
34 00 United States Landon Cassill  Chevrolet 35 31.889 0.935 0.000 173.853
35 77 United States Garrett Smithley  Chevrolet 10 32.273 1.319 0.384 171.784
36 52 United States B.J. McLeod  Chevrolet 7 32.293 1.339 0.020 171.678
37 51 Cody Ware  Chevrolet 11 33.315 2.361 1.022 166.412

 

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About this article

Series NASCAR Cup
Event Atlanta
Drivers Clint Bowyer
Teams Stewart-Haas Racing
Author Jim Utter
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