Toyota’s are still flexing their muscle as the manufacturer to beat in NASCAR this year, as they picked up where they left off last year at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway on Friday afternoon. After sweeping both poles and race victories at New Hampshire in 2015, Toyota drivers paced the field in the opening practice session of the weekend from the “Magic Mile” today.
Furniture Row Racing’s Martin Truex Jr. was quickest on the speed charts with a speed of 133.562 mph in his No. 78 Toyota. He turned that lap in the closing minutes to earn the quickest speed in the lone practice session of the day today.
Last year’s pole sitter in both races, Carl Edwards was second quick in his No. 19 Toyota, as the Joe Gibbs Racing driver turned a speed of 133.380 mph. He set that lap with 15 minutes to go, but Truex topped in just minutes later.
Edwards’s JGR teammate Kyle Busch was third quickest, as the defending July winner at New Hampshire turned a lap of 133.100 mph in his No. 18 Toyota to give Toyota’s a clean 1-2-3 sweep of the speed charts on Friday.
Busch’s brother Kurt Busch (133.091 mph) was fourth fastest while a fourth Toyota in Denny Hamlin rounded out the top five with a speed of 132.956 mph in his No. 11 Toyota.
Ryan Newman (132.794 mph), Jamie McMurray (132.641 mph), AJ Allmendinger ((132.618 mph) Chase Elliott (132.591 mph) and Matt Kenseth (132.462 mph) were sixth through 10th respectively.
Alex Bowman who’s filling in for Dale Earnhardt Jr. this weekend ended up 13th on the leaderboard in the opening session.
The series will qualifying at 4:30 pm ET today then have two more practice sessions from the one-mile track on Saturday.