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NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Daniel Suarez, William Byron Fastest In Martinsville Truck Practices

Frontstretch’s Truck Series content is presented by American Trucks

NASCAR Camping World Truck Series kicked off the weekend on Friday, running two practice sessions at the Martinsville Speedway.

Daniel Suarez and William Byron, teammates for the week at Kyle Busch Motorsports, were the fastest in Practice No. 1 and Practice No. 2 respectively. Although both are in the Toyota camp this season, both will be competing against each other for the championship next year in the XFINITY Series as Byron jumps ship to a ride with JR Motorsports.

Practice One

Suarez, one of just a handful of non-truck regulars in Saturday’s race, was the fastest in opening practice at 19.823 seconds (95.525 mph). Suarez has three starts at Martinsville in the Truck Series, with a best finish of sixth coming in the 2015 spring race. Cameron Hayley, who is currently 11th in Truck points, was second. Byron was third and Matt Crafton was fourth. John Hunter Nemechek rounded out the top 5 in fifth.

Johnny Sauter was sixth and Christopher Bell was eighth. Chase Elliott, the lone Sprint Cup driver in the field, was 14th. Ben Kennedy was 17th and Timothy Peters was the final Chase driver on the board in 20th.

There were two brief cautions for debris, one near the start of the session and one about half way through.

Full results can be found here.

Practice Two

Byron’s lap of 19.687 seconds (96.185 mph) in the final minutes of practice was good enough to be the fastest of this session. Byron has only one start at Martinsville, a third in the spring race this year. It was just one race before his breakthrough win at Kansas, the start of a rookie campaign that has made the young driver one of the hottest prospects in NASCAR.

Sauter was second and Suarez followed up on his first practice in third. Cole Custer finished up the day fourth and Tyler Reddick was fifth.

Bell was the only Chase driver besides Sauter and Byron in the top 10, at tenth. Kennedy was 11th and Crafton 12th. Peters improved from first practice but still sat only 15th in practice.

There were two spins in practice that caused a temporary halt. Kyle Soper (34th) spun out just ten minutes into practice and Brad Foy (32nd) spun just moments after the track went green again. Soper continued to practice but Foy did not- the team will repair his Chevrolet in time for qualifying tomorrow.

Speaking of qualifying, 36 trucks practiced on Friday, but only 32 will start the race.  Of those who likely will need to get into the race on speed, both Soper and Foy are under threat of not qualifying for the race.  Donnie Levister, who is racing his own truck this week is also under threat of failing to qualify.  Josh White was slowest of all in the second practice and could be in trouble as well.  Josh Reeves and Tommy Joe Martins may also need to turn faster laps in qualifying in order to get into the field.

Qualifying is scheduled for 10:15 a.m. Saturday morning at Martinsville Speedway.  The sessions can be seen live on FOX Sports 1.

Full results can be found here.