Hampton, GA – It was an extremely busy day of track activity at the Atlanta Motor Speedway on Friday. There were seven practice sessions among all three of NASCAR’s top series’ to go along with Cup qualifying on Friday evening as well. Three of those seven practice sessions came from the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series drivers, as they took to the track for three practices around the 1.54-mile Georgia track.
In the first session, rookie Chase Briscoe led the way with a speed of 181.082 mph in his No. 29 Ford. Briscoe, finished third at Daytona last week and with leading the charge among the 26 drivers to take to the track in the opening of the three sessions, it’s a great sign of things to come this weekend.
Noah Gragson was second fastest in his No. 18 Toyota with a time of 179.883 mph. Alex Bowman (179.412 mph), Christopher Bell (179.104 mph) and Chase Elliott (178.764 mph) rounded out the top five in the 55-minute first session.
In the second session, Christopher Bell topped the speed charts in that 55-minute practice with a speed of 180.357 mph in his No. 4 Toyota. It was fitting that he was tops on the speed charts as he is a former USAC driver like Briscoe was too.
Johnny Sauter was second overall with a speed of 179.994 mph in his No. 21 Chevrolet while Briscoe brought in the third quickest lap of the second session with a speed of 178.109 mph.
Brett Moffitt (177.932 mph) and Ben Rhodes (177.852 mph) rounded out the top five in session No. 2.
Chase Elliott was then fastest in final practice with a speed of 179.557 mph in his No. 23 Chevrolet. He turned that lap with a little over 10 minutes to go in the final 55-minute session to give him a ton of confidence heading into Saturday’s race.
Briscoe, nearly book ended the practice sessions with being quickest in the first practice and second in the third and final practice of the day with a speed of 179.557 mph. Being first, third and second respectively in the three sessions today has to make him the favorite for tomorrow’s race in my opinion.
Bell, was third overall with a speed of 178.937 mph to make him fourth, first and third respectively today. He too will be a factor tomorrow.
John Hunter Nemechek was fourth fastest (178.804 mph) while Gragson (178.781 mph) rounded out the top five.
The first incident and only of the day happened when Akinori Ogata spun his No. 50 Chevrolet off Turn 2 in the final session. He escaped any damage to his Truck and returned to the garage under power.
Kyle Busch who was 12th fastest in the first session was only seventh in session No. 2 and 16th in final practice. Another Cup driver in Austin Dillon was 18th in session 1, 22nd in session 2 and 20th in session 3.
Home state hero Chase Elliott was fifth, 13th and first respectively today.
Veteran Matt Crafton was consistently up front in the speed charts on Friday as he was seventh, eighth and seventh respectively in the three sessions today. Defending Trucks champion Johnny Sauter was eighth, second and 15th respectively himself.
The Truck drivers will qualifying tomorrow morning to set the field for Saturday afternoon’s Active Pest Control 200 (4:30 p.m. ET/FS1/MRN).