In a continuation of the first practice and qualifying from yesterday, Jimmie Johnson was the fastest driver in the second practice this weekend for the NASCAR Banking 500. Johnson laid down a lap of 28.852 seconds on his very first lap on the track, which correlates to a 187.162-mph lap. Johnson has been unheaded all weekend at Charlotte. Also continuing the theme of the weekend, Mark Martin was second fastest in the second practice. After being second fastest in the first practice, and qualifying on the outside of the front row during last night’s time trials, Martin was once again the bridesmaid with a lap of 29.065 seconds and a speed of 185.790 mph. While the two Hendrick drivers are the class of the field so far this weekend, Johnson is clearly the superior.
Finishing out the top five in the second practice were Greg Biffle, Matt Kenseth and Denny Hamlin. Biffle’s time was 29.151 seconds at 185.242 mph, Kenseth was 29.220/184.805 and Hamlin ran 29.223/184.786. All of the drivers ran their fastest lap in the first seven laps with the exception of Terry Labonte, whose fastest lap was his 14th on the track. 24 drivers set their fastest time on their first timed lap. With teams working on race setup, it would make sense because they are going out on fresh tires and then turning a large number of laps with the tires wearing out.
The second half of the top 10 included Ryan Newman sixth (29.251/184.609), Carl Edwards seventh (29.290/184.363), Kyle Busch eighth (29.315/184.206), Marcos Ambrose ninth (29.331/184.106) and Kasey Kahne was tenth (29.331/184.106). The top 10 were separated by .479 seconds. The top-39 drivers were less than one second apart with Elliott Sadler running 39th at 29.851/180.898.