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A veteran road racer and a veteran champion led the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series speed charts at Las Vegas Motor Speedway during the two practices held on Thursday (March 1) for Friday night’s Stratosphere 200.
Justin Marks, driving the No. 54 DGR-Crosley Toyota, led the first practice. Marks ran a quickest lap of 178.141 mph. He was followed by last week’s Atlanta Motor Speedway winner, Brett Moffitt, in the No. 16 Hattori Racing Enterprises Toyota, with a lap of 178.118 mph. Kyle Busch Motorsports driver Noah Gragson was third in his Toyota with a lap of 177.954 mph.
Points leader (and Daytona International Speedway winner) Johnny Sauter was the fastest Chevrolet in fourth at 177.942 mph for GMS Racing, while Kyle Busch, aiming for his third career tripleheader sweep, rounded out the top five with a lap of 177.672 mph.
24 trucks took part in the first practice, running laps ranging from 31 (Gragson) to one (Norm Benning). Benning was the slowest machine on the track, running a 144.764-mph lap.
The second practice featured slightly higher speeds, as Sauter sat atop the leaderboard for basically the entire practice. The 2016 CWTS champion drove a lap of 179.319 mph. Moffitt was second at 179.081 mph, followed by Gragson (178.903 mph), Stewart Friesen (178.678 mph) and Busch (178.483 mph).
30 drivers took to the track, many of whom ran more laps than in the opening practice. Busch ran the most laps with 40, followed by Cody Coughlin’s 39. Three drivers made only one lap: Scott Stenzel, Tommy Regan and BJ McLeod. The slowest truck was McLeod, running a lap of 130.668 mph.
Qualifying for the Stratosphere 200 will be at 6:05 p.m. ET on Friday, March 2, while the race itself will get underway several hours later at 9 p.m. ET, with coverage on Fox Sports 1.