Buescher, Truex lead Cup practices at Richmond

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Buescher, Truex lead Cup practices at Richmond

Series points leader Martin Truex Jr. topped the leaderboard in Friday’s final Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice at Richmond Raceway at 121.885 mph in the No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota. Truex won the spring race earlier this season at Richmond and is already locked into the Round of 12 thanks to his Las Vegas win last weekend.

Fellow playoff driver Chase Elliott was right behind him in the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet at 119.861 mph, good for second place.

RELATED: Richmond lap averages | Final practice results

Rounding out the top five were Sunoco Rookie of the Year contender Daniel Hemric in the No. 8 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet (119.268 mph), Denny Hamlin in the No. 11 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota (119.211 mph) and Austin Dillon in the No. 3 Richard Childress Racing Chevrolet (118.995 mph).

Kevin Harvick in the No. 4 Stewart-Haas Racing Ford was the highest finishing Ford in sixth with a fast lap of 118.964 mph.

Playoff driver William Byron got into the wall during final practice in the No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet but the team was able to make minor repairs and send Byron back on track. He finished practice in 27th.

The Monster Energy Series qualifying session is at 6:05 p.m. ET on NBCSN/NBC Sports App.

FIRST PRACTICE

Chris Buescher topped the leaderboard in Friday’s first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice at Richmond Raceway at 121.147 mph in the No. 37 JTG Daugherty Racing Chevrolet.

Right behind him was playoff driver Joey Logano in the No. 22 Team Penske Ford at 120.962 mph.

RELATED: Lap averages from Richmond | First practice results

Rounding out the top five were playoff drivers William Byron in the No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet (120.827 mph), defending race winner Kyle Busch in the No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota (120.687 mph) and Kyle Larson in the No. 42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet (120.487 mph).

Series points leader Martin Truex Jr., who won the playoff opener last weekend at Las Vegas and punched his ticket to the Round of 12, was 13th fastest with a speed of 119.723 mph in the No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.

The No. 00 of Landon Cassill was held for 15 minutes at the end of first practice as a penalty for being late out of the garage for inspection at Las Vegas.