The opening race of the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series playoffs is taking place this weekend at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Saturday’s UNOH 175 (1 p.m. ET/FS1/MRN) will kick off the postseason, as all eight drivers will vie for the 2017 title. With that being said, those eight drivers and the other non playoff eligible drivers had just two practice sessions on the “Magic Mile” on Friday to get their cars perfected for tomorrow afternoon’s race.
In the end, Kyle Busch Motorsports rang king as they led both practices this afternoon.
In the first session though, the top three speeds were set by drivers not eligible for the postseason.
Rookies Noah Gragson, Todd Gilliland and Justin Haley topped the speed charts in the initial practice.
Gragson, turned a lap of 131.492 mph in his No. 18 Toyota, while is Kyle Busch Motorsports teammate of Gilliland was second with a speed of 131.234 mph in his No. 51 Toyota.
Haley, circled the one-mile track with a lap of 131.031 mph in his No. 24 Chevrolet.
The next six drivers were all playoff contenders, with Matt Crafton (130.510 mph), Christopher Bell (130.416 mph), Johnny Sauter (130.287 mph), Austin Cindric (130.282 mph), Ben Rhodes (130.229 mph) and Kaz Grala (129.785 mph) being fourth through ninth respectively.
Grant Enfinger (129.626 mph) rounded out the top 10.
In final practice, this time is was Bell’s turn up top with a top lap of 132.877 mph in his No. 4 Toyota. Rhodes, went from eighth to second as he turned a speed of 132.310 mph in his No. 27 Toyota. Another KBM Truck, this time Gilliland again, was third fastest with a lap of 132.213 mph in the final 55-minute session.
Crafton (132.122 mph) and Gragson (132.071 mph rounded out the top five.
Sauter, was sixth for the second straight session, while Cindric, Grala, Nemechek and Briscoe were seventh, 10th, 13th and 14th respectively.