(Photo: Nigel Kinrade/NKP)

Mears, Toyotas Tough At Friday Richmond Practices

Toyota has amassed a very impressive record at the Richmond International Raceway. In the last 15 Cup races at the Virginia short track, Toyota has won nine times. This dominance showed no signs of slowing down on Friday, as Toyota generally stayed strong.

Kyle Busch was fastest in the one-hour morning session, turning a lap at 120.979 mph. Four Toyotas took four of the top 5 spots, with last week’s winner Martin Truex, Jr. in second. Denny Hamlin was third on the charts at his hometown track, while Chase hopeful Kasey Kahne finished fourth. Matt Kenseth, the defending race winner after leading over 300 laps last year, ended up fifth.

The second session featured mock qualifying runs during the latter half, but Casey Mears went out for one early and his lap at 120.557 mph ended up being the best of the session. Kyle Larson was second and Truex, Jr. held steady in third. Jamie McMurray finished fourth and Tony Stewart wrapped up his final Richmond practice in fifth. Toyota remained tough, however; all five manufacter cars were faster than anybody else in a ten lap average speed, led by Carl Edwards.

Chase Hopefuls

Chase Elliott– 21st in practice one, 30th in practice two.

Austin Dillon– 23rd in practice one, 12th in practice two.

Jamie McMurray- Ninth in practice one, fourth in practice two.

Ryan Newman– 18th in practice one, 23rd in practice two.

Kasey Kahne- Fourth in practice one, 13th in practice two.

Chris Buescher– 26th in practice one, 28th in practice two.

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About Michael Finley

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Michael has watched NASCAR for 15 years and began covering the sport five years ago. He is a graduate of Salisbury University and a proud member of the National Motorsports Press Association (NMPA).

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