Daniel Suarez was fastest in an eventful practice session at Pocono Raceway that left two drivers going to backup cars.
Suarez’s average lap speed of 172.516 mph led the way in the 55-minute session on Saturday. William Byron was second (172.404 mph) and Aric Almirola ended up third (172.401 mph).
Martin Truex Jr. was fourth and Clint Bowyer completed the top-five, putting three Stewart-Haas Racing drivers in the top-five.
Rounding out the top-10 were Jimmie Johnson, Erik Jones, Denny Hamlin, Kyle Busch (who has won the last two Pocono races) and Matt DiBenedetto.
About 14 minutes into the session, Kyle Larson got loose in Turn 2, hit the wall and heavily damaged his No. 42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet.
Larson’s team immediately brought out his backup car, which means he will have to start Sunday’s race from the rear of the field. It’s the second consecutive week Larson has wrecked in practice.
“I’m just disappointed in myself,” Larson said. “I got really loose and then over-corrected some and then spun to the inside and hit the wall. I just hate that I did that. We only have today for practice and don’t have much time between practices.
“We probably won’t have much laps in the backup car. I was happy last week with (the team’s) efforts to get that one ready and how good it was in the race as well. Hopefully, we can do it again.
“I just got to stop being stupid.”
About 33 minutes into the session, Chase Elliott got loose in Turn 1 and also hit the wall, leaving his No. 9 Chevrolet heavy right-side damage. Elliott will also move to a backup car and have to start Sunday’s race from the rear of the field.
“I just made a mistake and crashed,” Elliott said. “I put myself in a pretty poor situation there in practice.”
Corey LaJoie also got into the Turn 2 wall during the session but his team was attempting to repair the damage.
|4||19||Martin Truex Jr.||Toyota||23||52.208||0.039||0.004||172.387|
|23||17||Ricky Stenhouse Jr.||Ford||14||53.365||1.196||0.072||168.650|
|29||43||Darrell Wallace Jr.||Chevrolet||16||53.538||1.369||0.026||168.105|
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