Moments after winning the pole for the XFINITY Series race, Kyle Larson hopped into his No. 42 machine, jumping to the top of the leaderboard in final practice at Dover International Speedway.
Larson’s hot lap came in at 157.411 mph, .016 seconds quicker than 10-time Dover winner Jimmie Johnson (157.301 mph). The No. 48 team led by Chad Knaus has improved on their Chevrolet throughout the weekend in every practice, getting a little bit closer to the top.
“I was struggling a little bit the last practice, so we made a good adjustment there on the last run and I feel like we got some good grip in our Target Chevy,” Larson said. “And then, this practice I felt good. I just made two really long runs. Our beginning of the run speed is good and our falloff is not that bad, either.”
Pole sitter Kyle Busch was third in final practice (157.246 mph), the lowest the No. 18 car has been on the speed charts since Friday morning. Martin Truex Jr., Matt Kenseth, Kevin Harvick and Kurt Busch all turned the same lap at 157.143 mph, good enough for fourth on the board.
38 of 39 drivers turned a lap in final practice, but Larson paced the one-mile oval 60 times, the most of all drivers. Cody Ware was the only driver choosing not to run.
The green flag for Dover is set to fly shortly after 1 p.m. ET on Sunday. Kenseth is the defending winner of the event. Last year, he capitalized on 12 cautions en route to leading 48 laps, picking up his third victory at the Monster Mile. Larson was runner-up that day, leading 85 circuits of his own and coming within a whisker of passing the 2003 Cup champ in the final laps.
In the fall race, Truex went to Victory Lane in commanding fashion.
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