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Sam Hornish Jr. wants a win for RCR
RELATED: Meet the XFINITY Chase field SPARTA, Ky. – Sam Hornish may not be a threat in the NASCAR XFINITY Series inaugural Chase, but that doesn't mean the Richard Childress Racing driver isn't a concern. Saturday night's VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) officially kicks off the series' seven-race Chase. Hornish is making just his fourth start of the season, therefore he was not eligible for the 12-team Chase field. That hasn't keep him out of the winner's circle, however as he wheeled the No. 18 Toyota for Joe Gibbs Racing to the win at Iowa. And in two subsequent starts with the No. 2 team for RCR, Hornish has finished sixth and second. He's making start No. 3 in the No. 2 Chevrolet for RCR here at Kentucky. And the 37-year-old was once again fast here Friday, clocking the third-fastest lap in each of the day's two practice sessions. Qualifying is scheduled for 4:45 p.m. ET on Saturday. Joe Gibbs Racing driver Erik Jones was quickest in both practice sessions. "It was pretty good," Hornish said of the results at day's end. "The car started off a little bit free in the afternoon, but it was so hot. I felt like we got just a little bit behind there in the last practice but our car is good, it's got decent balance; we just need a little bit to be able to run with the JGR cars." Hornish has four top-10 finishes in five XFINITY Series starts at the 1.5-mile Kentucky track. His racing career, which includes three IndyCar championships, got a major boost here in 2000 when he finished ninth after running out of fuel late in the race. That effort opened eyes and doors, and soon his open-wheel career was off and running. His NASCAR career has included stints in Sprint Cup and the XFINITY Series; he also has one start in the Camping World Truck Series. "Right now this is the last (race) I have scheduled ... we've had a good run," he said of the RCR arrangement. "It's a good car, they've got some wins and they continue to build momentum. I'd like to go to Victory Lane for them for sure. "They're running for an owners' championship so we have to be smart about everything we do as well." JGR teammates Jones and Daniel Suarez are seeded first and third in the Chase, respectively, with veteran Elliott Sadler (JR Motorsports) wedged in between. Ty Dillon , teammate to Hornish, is seeded fourth while Justin Allgaier (JRM) is fifth. Darrell Wallace ( Roush Fenway Racing ), Brendan Gaughan (RCR), Brennan Poole ( Chip Ganassi Racing ), Ryan Sieg (RSS Racing), Ryan Reed (RFR), Brandon Jones (RCR) and Blake Koch (Kaulig Racing) round out the 12-team Chase field. "We were able to make some good gains mostly in race conditions," said Jones, who will be seeking his fifth win of the season on Saturday. "It wasn't so much that we needed the speed, we needed to find some drivability in it and I think we (did). ... "It's going to change a lot once it cools all the way down and we get into race conditions but I feel pretty good about it." Except for the number of races, the XFINITY Series Chase mirrors that of NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series, with three-race segments leading up to a one-race finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway .
Post-Race Reactions: Good Sam Club 200
Clint Bowyer, Blake Feese , Kyle Busch, James Buescher and Ryan Newman comment on their Atlanta finishes.
Buescher and Raymer get together
Rookie Blake Feese gets loose in front of new points leader James Buescher and brings out the caution.
XFINITY race winners carrying extra Chase confidence
RELATED: See the XFINITY Chase Grid " Every '16 winner " Get to know the field CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Of the 12 drivers that make up this year's NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase field, only three won races during the "regular" season, so the fact that the three appeared to be feeling pretty good about their chances Tuesday during media day activities at the NASCAR Hall of Fame came as no surprise. Erik Jones , 20, won more races than anyone not named Kyle Busch , four to be exact, and most folks here seemed to agree, some more grudgingly than others, that the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 20 team is the one to beat. Veteran Elliott Sadler won twice, and the Emporia, Virginia native has been around the track a few times. His career, in fact, was already underway when the Jones family welcomed young Erik into the world. Sadler's wins in the No. 1 Chevrolet for JR Motorsports came this year at Talladega and Darlington and Sadler is the only guy in the field who can say he was in the inaugural Chase for both the premier series and the XFINITY Series. Daniel Suarez , Jones' teammate, earned his first series victory at Michigan. He enters the seven-race playoff, which begins with this weekend’s VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 at Kentucky Speedway (Saturday, 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), with three top-five finishes in his last four starts. The other result was a top-10 so Suarez and the No. 19 team appear to be on top of their game as well. No one is conceding anything just yet however. Not the Richard Childress Racing trio of Ty Dillon , Brendan Gaughan or Brandon Jones ; Sadler’s JRM teammate Justin Allgaier or Roush Fenway Racing ’s Darrell Wallace Jr . and Ryan Reed . Even single-team entrants Brennan Poole ( Chip Ganassi Racing ), Ryan Sieg (RSS Racing), and Blake Koch (Kaulig Racing) spoke of the potential for advancing from one round to the next and keeping title hopes alive. "I don't know if that's good or bad," a grinning Sadler said of his dual Chase experience. "I do remember being part of the first ever (Sprint) Cup Chase and now this one. It's pretty cool." The benefits of that 2004 experience are limited, but useful nonetheless. "It's not like I'm a seasoned quarterback that can read the defense better than a rookie quarterback," Sadler said. "I think that's when experience plays a part. Now it's just about which teams can get their cars the fastest, what driver can give the best information and not make mistakes on the track. Everybody that's part of this Chase can do just as good of a job as anybody else, no matter their age or where they are from or how many years they've raced. I don't think that's a big part of it. "The only thing I think I know is the difference in the intensity level; that's the biggest thing I remember about being a part of the ( Sprint Cup ) Chase. The next week it was like 'holy cow, it's flipped the switch.' Not only racing other guys but your team, what they are going through, the driver, the communication. It's like everything is set to fast forward … and you have to understand how to communicate at such a different level." Jones is coming off a 2015 season that saw the Byron, Michigan native win the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series title, and he’s headed for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series in ’17 as a teammate with Martin Truex Jr . at Furniture Row Racing . Six times this season, he and Suarez have finished a race with both cars in the top five. In 13 other races, at least one of the two have finished fifth or higher. The teammate tag doesn't go out the window with the Chase now at hand. But both, along with 10 others, are racing for a shot at a single prize. "It's tough; the teammate deal is always tough in racing," Jones said. "… There are times when you have to race like teammates and times your race as competitors. It's a tough balance for sure, but it's also nice when you go to the race track and you have other drivers to lean on, you can get information from and better each other. "Hopefully we're both in Homestead chasing the championship." Suarez also understands the benefits that come with a competitive teammate and agreed that "it's hard to balance out because both of us want to race hard for wins. "I think we're going to be in good shape," he said. "Both of us have a good shot to be competitive every single weekend for the Chase." </p>
Sadler wins first XFINITY Chase race at Kentucky
RELATED: Results " Standings " Chase Grid SPARTA, KY – A huge push from Daniel Suárez on a restart with four laps to go in Saturday night's eventful VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300 sent Elliott Sadler ahead of Ryan Blaney to win the opening race of the NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase at Kentucky Speedway . Sadler's third win of the season and 13th of his XFINITY Series career was about more than just stamping his way into Round 2 of the Chase. The Emporia, Virginia, native fought for the win while thinking of his mother, Bell, who was released from the hospital Saturday, after a week of hospitalization and two surgeries. "We fought through a lot tonight," Sadler said in Victory Lane. "I'm going to get a little emotional on you, I've been in the hospital all week with my mom in ICU watching her fight and fight through a lot of pain and suffering. (She) made her way back home tonight to watch the race. Mom, I love you. She leads so much by example." Sadler also credited his team, who helped Sadler battle from outside the top 15 earlier in the race. "These guys are my heroes," Sadler said. "We had a 10th or 15th place car at best. Still had to come in and really take our time and work on it. Great pit calls by Kevin (Meendering, crew chief) and the guys to get us in position. Got a good push there at the end. I do want to say thanks to Josh Berry for helping me a ton tonight. That kid did some cool things on the restarts. This OneMain Financial team has no quit in them. We just fight till the end. This is a great way to start the Chase." Suárez, who finished second, said he struggled with a tight condition all night but was best at the end of the race. "Right at the end, we were pretty good, maybe just a little tight but we were strong," he said. "I feel like we were the fastest car out there at the end. I just needed one or two laps more to get the win." The inaugural XFINITY Series Chase race offered plenty of excitement and drama. With the "win and advance" format putting a greater premium on victories, drivers found themselves on the edge of control at a track where the racing groove was extremely tight since undergoing a repave in May. "At halfway, we were running 20th," Sadler said. "By my calculations, we were probably 10th or 11th in points, so to fight back that last 100 laps to gain that kind of momentum probably means a lot for us and these guys. I'm so proud of these guys. Dale (Earnhardt Jr., team owner) and Kelley (Earnhardt-Miller, team manager) and all of our partners for Hunt Bros., and Chevrolet and everyone that does so much for us at JR Motorsports. This is a great way to start off the Chase and keeps the momentum on our side, we can relax and go to Dover and have fun there and Charlotte and get ready for the second round." XFINITY Chase drivers Ty Dillon , Brandon Jones and Erik Jones all found themselves in a deep hole after being collected in accidents throughout a caution-filled race. Dillon and Erik Jones tangled while racing for second with 12 laps remaining. The event was red-flagged for five minutes, 34 seconds for cleanup of the Turn 3 incident. RELATED: See the wreck " Jones' take " Dillon's take Jones, the pole sitter who led a race-high 100 laps, took responsibility for the crash. "I just got sucked around," Jones said after the incident. "I tried to slow down but Ty was holding me down there pretty tight on the restart, slamming doors through (Turns) 1 and 2. It was my fault but it's a pretty tough aero situation to be in. "I just couldn't hang on to it. I tried to slow down but he kept slamming down on my door and I did all I could to hang on to it. It definitely looks like we're going to have to run really well at Dover and Charlotte or even win." Behind Sadler and Suárez, Sprint Cup rookie Ryan Blaney finished third while Sam Hornish Jr . and Matt Tifft completed the top five. Tifft, a NASCAR Next alumnus made his XFINITY Series return after undergoing brain surgery in July to remove a remove a benign, low-grade glioma. Sadler leaves Kentucky Speedway with an eight-point lead in the standings and guaranteed admission to the next round of the Chase at Kansas Speedway in three weeks. Suárez (+27 points above the cutoff line) is second in the Chase standings, followed by Brendan Gaughan (+21), Ryan Reed (+19), Darrell Wallace Jr . (+19), Justin Allgaier (+17), Brennan Poole (+16), Blake Koch (+15), Erik Jones (-3), Ryan Sieg (-5), Brandon Jones (-15) and Ty Dillon (-15). &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
XFINITY, Camping World Truck Chase-clinching scenarios for Chicagoland
XFINITY SERIES The XFINITY Series regular season finale, the Drive for Safety 300 , takes place Saturday at Chicagoland Speedway at 3 p.m. ET (NBC, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio), while the Sprint Cup Series Chase Grid was set last week at Richmond International Speedway. RELATED: See the Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Chase Grid An 11th-place finish at Richmond allowed Roush Fenway Racing 's Ryan Reed to clinch at Chase spot, leaving two spots available for clinching this weekend at Chicagoland. Erik Jones , Elliott Sadler , Daniel Suarez , Justin Allgaier , Ty Dillon , Brendan Gaughan , Brennan Poole , Brandon Jones and Darrell Wallace Jr . have also clinched Chase spots. All of the following drivers could also automatically clinch with a win. Possible to Clinch: • Blake Koch (0 Wins, 570 Points, 449 Points Ahead of 31st): Koch could earn a Chase berth by tallying 39 points -- achieved by finishing 2nd with no laps led, third with at least one lap led or fourth with the most laps led -- and a new winner at Chicagoland. He could also earn a berth with a repeat winner and 19 points, achieved by finishing 22nd with no laps led, 23rd with at least one lap led and 24th with the most laps led. • Ryan Sieg (0 Wins, 567 Points, 446 Points Ahead of 31st): Sieg could clinch on points at Chicagoland with a repeat winner/ Blake Koch win and 22 points, achieved by finishing 19th with no laps led, 20th with at least one lap led or 21st with most laps led. He would need some help to clinch with a new winner at Chicagoland. • Dakoda Armstrong (0 Wins, 547 Points, 426 Points Ahead of 31st): Armstrong needs help to clinch on points. • Jeremy Clements (0 Wins, 538 Points, 417 Points Ahead of 31st): Clements needs help to clinch on points. The following need a win to clinch a Chase spot: Ross Chastain , Ryan Preece , Ray Black Jr ., BJ McLeod , Joey Gase . Camping World Truck Ser ies The Camping World Truck Series regular season finale, the American Ethanol e15 225, takes place Friday at Chicagoland Speedway at 8:30 p.m. ET (FS1, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). Possible to Clinch: • Daniel Hemric (0 Wins, 374 Points, 305 Points Ahead of 31st) - Would clinch on points with 10 points (23rd and no laps led, 24th and led at least one lap, 25th and led most laps) and a new winner. Would clinch on points with a repeat winner, regardless of finish. With a win, they would clinch a Chase spot on wins. • Timothy Peters (0 Wins, 350 Points, 281 Points Ahead of 31st) - Would clinch on points with a repeat winner (or a win by Daniel Hemric ) and 2 Points (31st and no laps led, 32nd and led at least one lap). With a win, he would clinch a Chase spot on wins. Could clinch on points with a new winner and help (needs to outpoint Daniel Hemric by six points (Peters owns the tie-breaker). • Cole Custer (0 Wins, 318 Points, 249 Points Ahead of 31st) - With a win, he would clinch a Chase spot on wins. Could clinch on points with a repeat winner (or win by Daniel Hemric ) and help (needs to outpoint Timothy Peters by 32 points (Custer owns the tie-breaker). The following need a win to clinch a Chase spot: Cameron Hayley , Tyler Reddick , Ben Rhodes , Spencer Gallagher , Rico Abreu, Austin Wayne Self, Travis Kvapil and Jordan Anderson .
Erik Jones holds off Larson to win at Chicagoland
RELATED: Complete race results " Series standings " Chase Grid JOLIET, Ill. – Kyle Busch opened the door, and that was all the invitation Erik Jones needed. When Busch, the polesitter for Saturday's Drive for Safety 300 at Chicagoland Speedway , spun with a tire down while leading on Lap 182 of 200, Jones took full advantage of his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate's misfortune. The driver of the No. 20 JGR Toyota restarted sixth on Lap 187 after Busch brought out the eighth caution of the afternoon and quickly closed the gap on Elliott Sadler , who restarted second and grabbed the lead from JR Motorsports teammate Clint Bowyer , who had stayed out on old tires like Sadler. Jones caught and passed Sadler on Lap 192. Race runner-up Kyle Larson followed four laps later but couldn't catch Jones before the finish. In the final four laps, Jones moved up the track to take Larson's preferred racing line and crossed the finish line .392 seconds ahead of Larson, who brushed the outside wall on the final lap while trying to close in on the race winner. "It was tough," said Jones, who won for the second time at the 1.5-mile track and the fourth time in his rookie year. "I knew we were in a good spot on tires, but we pretty far back – think we restarted sixth there. "I didn't know if my Hisense Camry was going to have enough time to get back up to the front, but we had a really good restart and got clear to third and then just had to go chase Elliott down. It was a matter of time before we got around him. What an awesome day!" With four victories this season, Jones enters the inaugural NASCAR XFINITY Series Chase as the No. 1 seed heading to the Chase opener next Saturday at Kentucky Speedway . "It's a lot of momentum," Jones said. "I wish this was our first round right here. We'll go into Kentucky definitely with a full head of steam and are due for another win there. Our mile-and-a-half program is great – it's been great all year. "To finally get a first mile-and-a-half win of the year – just looking forward to getting to Kentucky next weekend and try to chase down another one." Saturday's event finalized the 12-driver Chase field, as Blake Koch and Ryan Sieg clinched the final two spots with finishes of 15th and 12th, respectively. The full Chase field, in order of seeding, consists of Erik Jones , Sadler, Daniel Suarez , Ty Dillon , Justin Allgaier , Darrell Wallace Jr ., Brendan Gaughan , Brennan Poole , Sieg, Ryan Reed , Brandon Jones and Koch. Sadler finished third on Saturday, followed by Suarez and Allgaier. Larson recovered from a pit road speeding penalty to record his eighth top-five finish in 12 starts this year. "I knew I could get the top (lane) going, but I knew when I got the top going, Erik would move up just when I got to him," Larson said. "He did, and I tried to carry a lot of throttle off of (Turn) 2 and maybe get a run on him, but I got into the wall." Busch led 154 laps and recovered from his spin to finish 13th. All told, 11 different drivers led at least one lap, including the top eight drivers in the finishing order. &amp;lt;/p&amp;gt;
Full schedule for Chicagoland
RELATED: Find NBCSN in your area " Watch live online at NBCSports.com The NASCAR Sprint Cup , XFINITY and Camping World Truck Series will gather for a tripleheader showing at Chicagoland Speedway this weekend. Check out the full schedule below. Note: All times are ET SUNDAY, SEPT. 18: 2:00 p.m.: NSCS Driver Introductions. 2:30 p.m.: Intro Presentation of Colors: 347 th Fighter Squadron Honor Guard. 2:30 p.m.: Invocation by: Michael McDowell , Driver of the No. 95 Thrivent Financial Chevrolet. 2:31 p.m.: National Anthem: Jim Cornelison. 2:37 p.m.: "Driver's, Start Your Engines" by: Greg Cipes, Voice of Michelangelo, TMNT and The Kids of NASCAR 2:46 p.m.: Start of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 400 (267 Laps, 400.5 Miles), NBCSN/NBC Sports App ( Results ) PRESS CONFERENCES ( Watch live ) -- 5:15 p.m.: Post-NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race DAILY ROUND-UP -- Late pit stop propels Truex Jr. to victory -- Chase bubble after Chicagoland -- Truex, Johnson fail post-race inspection -- Speeding penalty plagues "Six-Time" -- Bridesmaid baton to Elliott at Chicago -- Unfortunate timing for Harvick at Chicago -- Smith, wife welcome baby girl -- Harvick, Larson to start race from the rear -- At-track photos: Sunday at Chicagoland -- Dillon to sub for Smith in No. 7 at Chicago THURSDAY, SEPT. 15: ON TRACK -- 4-4:55 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series first practice ( Results ) -- 6:30-7:25 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series final practice ( Results ) LIVE EVENTS ( Watch live ) -- 3:05 p.m.: Live driver interviews at Ready. Set. Chase. launch events DAILY ROUNDUP -- What to watch for at Chicago -- Key fantasy advice for the Chase opener -- NASCAR updates rules for Chase -- Cain: Don't forget about Larson in the Chase -- Twitter handles to replace driver names on windshields in the Chase -- Harvick explains bull tweet during media day -- Stewart reveals he can't tie a tie -- Gordon texted apology to Elliott after incident -- Stewart on Newman's fiery comments: 'I don't blame him' -- Best quotes from Chase Media Day -- As sun sets on Stewart, Elliott's time to shine brightening -- Townley tops opening Trucks practice at Chicago -- Hemric holds the power in final practice FRIDAY, SEPT. 16: ON TRACK -- 12:30-1:25 p.m.: NASCAR XFINITY Series first practice, NBCSN/NBC Sports App CANCELED DUE TO WEATHER -- 3:15-4:25 p.m.: NASCAR XFINITY Series practice, NBC Sports App ( Results ) -- 4:45 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series Keystone Light Pole Qualifying, FS1 ( Results ) -- 6:45 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying, NBCSN/NBC Sports App CANCELED DUE TO WEATHER ( Results ) -- 6:45-7:45 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice, NBCSN ( Results ) -- 8:30 p.m.: NASCAR Camping World Truck Series American Ethanol E15 225 (150 laps, 225 miles), FS1 ( Results ) PRESS CONFERENCES ( Watch live ) -- 11 a.m.: Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles race team introduction -- 11:15 a.m.: Blake Koch , Ryan Sieg and Dakoda Armstrong -- 11:30 a.m.: Daniel Hemric , Timothy Peters and Cole Custer -- 11:45 a.m.: Justin Allgaier -- 12:30 p.m.: Matt Tifft -- 1:15 p.m.: Joliet Township announcement -- 10:15 p.m.: Post-NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race GARAGECAM ( Watch live ) -- Noon: XFINITY Series -- 1 p.m.: Sprint Cup Series DAILY ROUNDUP -- SHR names Custer as driver for 2017 XFINITY team -- Rain shortens on-track activity at Chicagoland -- Stewart, Newman meet with NASCAR at Chicagoland -- See photos from Friday at Chicago -- Busch on pole for Sunday's race -- Johnson leads opening practice at Chicagoland -- See lineup, team info. for Sunday's race -- 2016 Truck Series Chase field set -- 'Rowdy' wins at Truck race at Chicagoland -- Peters perserveres to make Chase, Hayley misses out -- Meet all eight of the Truck Series Chase drivers SATURDAY, SEPT. 17: -- 10:30-11:25 a.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series second practice, CNBC/NBC Sports App ( Results ) -- 11:45 a.m.: NASCAR XFINITY Series Coors Light Pole Qualifying, NBCSN/NBC Sports App ( Results ) -- 1:30-2:20 p.m.: NASCAR Sprint Cup Series final practice, NBCSN/NBC Sports App ( Results ) -- 3 p.m.: NASCAR XFINITY Series Drive for Safety 300 (200 laps, 300 miles), NBC/NBC Sports App ( Results ) PRESS CONFERENCES ( Watch live ) -- 5 p.m.: Post-NASCAR XFINITY Series race DAILY ROUNDUP -- NXS Chase field set at Chicagoland -- Meet the 2016 NXS Chase field -- Jones holds off Larson for NXS Chicagoland win -- NASCAR.com staff picks for Cup Chase -- Larson sweeps Cup Chicagoland Saturday practices -- Busch's winning Truck fails post-race inspection -- Busch on the pole for NXS race -- RCR names Hemric to full-time NXS ride -- At-track photos: Saturday at Chicagoland -- Bandaged hand won't keep Kennedy from Chase -- 2016 Cup Chase timeline &amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;lt;/p&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;gt;
Blake Koch, Austin Dillon lead XFINITY practices at Bristol
RELATED: Practice 2 results Blake Koch topped the leaderboard in Friday's second NASCAR XFINITY Series practice at Bristol Motor Speedway , clocking in at 123.666 mph in his No. 11 Kaulig Racing Chevrolet. Right behind him was Kyle Busch in his No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota after posting a fastest lap of 123.364 mph. Rounding out the top five were Austin Dillon in the No. 2 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet (123.356 mph), Jeb Burton in the No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford (123.166 mph) and Erik Jones in the No. 20 JGR Toyota (122.905 mph). Series points leader Daniel Suarez was eighth-fastest with a speed of 122.131 mph in the No. 19 JGR Toyota while the defending race winner Joey Logano was 10th on the leaderboard in his No. 22 Team Penske Ford (122.092 mph). With approximately five minutes remaining in the 55-minute session, Darrell Wallace Jr . made some contact with the wall, causing slight damage to the right-rear fender of his No. 6 Roush Fenway Racing Ford (18th-fastest, 121.366 mph). Saturday's Coors Light Pole Qualifying is set for a 9:30 a.m. ET green flag (FS1). PRACTICE 1 RECAP RELATED: Practice 1 results Austin Dillon topped the leaderboard in Friday's opening NASCAR XFINITY Series practice at Bristol Motor Speedway , turning a fast lap of 123.237 mph in his No. 2 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet. Kyle Larson clocked in second, wheeling his No. 42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet at 123.095 mph around the short track. Richard Childress Racing teammates Brandon Jones in the No. 33 Chevrolet (123.016 mph) and Brendan Gaughan in the No. 62 Chevrolet (122.866 mph) came up third and fourth, respectively, while Texas winner Kyle Busch completed the top five with a fast lap of 122.819 mph in his No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota. Defending race winner Joey Logano was eighth-fastest in the field (122.357 mph), driving the No. 22 Ford for Team Penske . Series points leader Daniel Suarez was 11th-fastest with a speed of 121.906 mph in the No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.
NBC, Blake Shelton bring back the sunshine
RELATED: Full schedule for 2016 Blake Shelton and his NASCAR friends are "Bringing Back the Sunshine" for NBC's second season of NASCAR coverage under its new television deal. The country singer is once again performing the song -- with slightly new lyrics -- that will serve as the introduction ahead of each race televised on the NBC family of networks. The spot was filmed during the spring race weekend at Texas Motor Speedway in April. Watch the video below to see a host of your favorite Sprint Cup drivers barbecuing, including an awkward "bro hug" attempt by Aric Almirola and interesting air guitar by Clint Bowyer and Martin Truex Jr . Who plays it better? You be the judge! NBC's NASCAR race coverage kicks off this weekend at Daytona International Speedway with the Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola on Saturday, July 2. Pre-race coverage begins at 7 p.m. ET on NBC.