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NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Chris Buescher, Martin Truex Jr. Lead Richmond Cup Practices

The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series took to the track at Richmond Raceway Friday, Sept. 20, for a pair of practice sessions for tomorrow’s playoff race.

Practice 1

JTG Daugherty Racing’s Chris Buescher paced the first practice session with a speed of 121.146 mph.

The 50-minute session had nine playoff drivers in the top 10, while Las Vegas Motor Speedway winner Martin Truex Jr. was 13th.

All three of Truex’s teammates — Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Erik Jones — had speeds in the top 10, running fourth, sixth and seventh, respectively.

Brad Keselowski was the only Team Penske driver outside the top 10, with the 23rd-best speed, and posted the lowest speed of any playoff driver.

No Stewart-Haas Racing drivers posted speeds at the top of the board; the team’s best was Daniel Suarez, who was 12th.

William Byron and Chase Elliott put half of Hendrick Motorsports in the top 10 with third- and ninth-place runs, while Kyle Larson and Ryan Newman were fifth and 10th on the leaderboard, respectively.

Cup Richmond Practice 1

Practice 2

Truex led the way in second practice, topping the charts by more than 2 mph over second-place Elliott.

Truex recorded a fast speed of 121.885 mph, the only driver to surpass the 120 mph mark in the second session.

Elliott’s 119.861 mph was good for second on the leaderboard, while Daniel Hemric, Hamlin and Austin Dillon rounded out the top five, putting both Richard Childress Racing cars near the top.

Hamlin also had the best 10-lap average.

Kevin Harvick, Keselowski, Ryan Blaney, Busch and Newman made up the rest of the top 10.

First practice leader Buescher managed a 27th-place time in second practice, recording a speed of 117.437 mph.

Matt DiBenedetto put in 87 laps during the session, the most of any driver.

Byron scraped the wall during one of his laps, ending up 26th on the leaderboard.

Cup Richmond Practice 2

All 38 cars posted lap times in both sessions.

Cup qualifying will get underway shortly after 6 p.m. ET on Friday, while the Federated Auto Parts 400 is scheduled for Saturday at 7:30 p.m. ET.

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