Logano and McMurray top Talladega practice sessions

Jamie McMurray
Jamie McMurray hits 199.7 mph

The Aspen Dental Weekend at Talladega Superspeedway got off to a roaring start on Friday, with a total of five practice sessions between the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR XFINITY Series and ARCA Racing Series Presented by Menards taking to the 2.66-mile oval track.

Jamie McMurray topped the speed charts at 199.737 mph in the first session of practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series GEICO 500 in the No. 1 McDonald’s Chevrolet. McMurray is a two-time winner, 2009 and 2013, at NASCAR’s Biggest and Baddest track.

Carl Edwards, winner of the past two consecutive NSCS races, said he enters the weekend encouraged by the success displayed by Toyota during February’s Daytona 500, which was won by teammate Denny Hamlin. “It was something like I’ve never been a part of. I don’t know if that same type of thing will work at Talladega, but it’d be hard not to try. We’ve got a really good group that understands what teamwork is."

Practice 1
Talladega Superspeedway winner Jamie McMurray topped opening practice. The wheelman of the No. 1 Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates Chevrolet posted a fastest lap of 199.737 mph.

Rookie Chase Elliott was second-fastest during the 55-minute session, propelling the No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet around the 2.66-mile track at 199.729 mph.

Stewart-Haas Racing's Kurt Busch rounded out the top three with his No. 41 coming in at 199.409 mph.

Busch's teammate Danica Patrick was next in her No. 10 Chevrolet (199.384 mph) while the No. 6 of Trevor Bayne earned the fifth-quickest lap (199.317 mph).

The back-to-back race winner of 2016, Carl Edwards was 23rd (196.552 mph) in his No. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.

Tony Stewart and Ty Dillon took turns wheeling the No. 14 throughout practice and earned 29th (195.884 mph). Dillon will fill in as a relief driver for "Smoke" during qualifying and the 500-mile event.

Six-time Talladega winner, and defending race champ, Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished practice 32nd (195.150 mph).

Logano leads a pack of cars in practice 2
Logano leads a pack of cars in practice 2

Practice 2
Joey Logano launched to the fastest speed in final NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice Friday afternoon at Talladega Superspeedway.

Logano, winner of the series' most recent race here last October, posted a best lap of 196.290 mph in the Team Penske No. 22 Ford. He was just .013 seconds ahead of Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate Ryan Blaney, second-fastest at 196.238 mph in the Wood Brothers Racing No. 21 Ford.

Fellow rookie Chase Elliott was third-fastest at 196.185 mph in the Hendrick Motorsports No. 24 Chevrolet. Danica Patrick (195.094 mph) and rookie Brian Scott completed the top five in the final 55-minute prep for Sunday's GEICO 500 (1 p.m. ET, FOX, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

Few drivers participated in large packs, with most spending time concentrating on single-car runs to prepare for Saturday's Coors Light Pole Qualifying (12:30 p.m. ET, FOX). But with inclement weather in Saturday's forecast, several drivers attempted to better their position in the practice order should qualifying be washed out.

Among those was Blaney, one of five drivers attempting to qualify for the four starting berths reserved for open, non-chartered teams. He received aerodynamic help from Logano, whose Penske team shares an alliance with the Wood Brothers, a fellow Ford operation.

Ty Dillon, on standby for Tony Stewart in his second race back from a back injury, was 16th-fastest in the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 14 Chevrolet. The team spend the majority of the session practicing in the garage for a quick driver change, something the team plans to do midstream in Sunday's 500-miler as Stewart eases his way back from his injuries.

Defending race winner Dale Earnhardt Jr. was seventh-fastest at 193.584 mph around the 2.66-mile track.

Practice 1: Full results

Pos. Car # Driver Manufacturer Sponsor Speed Time Behind
1 1 Jamie McMurray Chevrolet McDonald's 199.737 47.943 Leader
2 24 Chase Elliott Chevrolet NAPA Auto Parts 199.729 47.945 0.002
3 41 Kurt Busch Chevrolet Monster Energy 199.409 48.022 0.079
4 10 Danica Patrick Chevrolet Aspen Dental 199.384 48.028 0.085
5 6 Trevor Bayne Ford Advocare Ford Fusion 199.317 48.044 0.101
6 4 Kevin Harvick Chevrolet Busch Fishing Chevrolet SS 199.288 48.051 0.108
7 13 Casey Mears Chevrolet GEICO 199.251 48.06 0.117
8 22 Joey Logano Ford Shell Pennzoil 199.247 48.061 0.118
9 42 Kyle Larson Chevrolet Target 199.243 48.062 0.119
10 95 Michael McDowell Chevrolet Thrivent Financial 199.193 48.074 0.131
11 16 Greg Biffle Ford Ford EcoBoost Ford Fusion 199.015 48.117 0.174
12 *55 Michael Waltrip Chevrolet Peak & BlueDEF Toyota Camry 197.366 48.519 0.576
13 *21 Ryan Blaney Ford Motorcraft / Quick Lane Tire + Auto Center 197.187 48.563 0.620
14 *35 David Gilliland Ford Shaw's Southern Belle Seafood 197.074 48.591 0.648
15 18 Kyle Busch Toyota Skittles Marvel 197.021 48.604 0.661
16 27 Paul Menard Chevrolet Moen / Menards 196.907 48.632 0.689
17 *98 Cole Whitt Toyota RticCoolers.com 196.875 48.64 0.697
18 3 Austin Dillon Chevrolet Dow – Energy & Water / Intellifresh 196.855 48.645 0.702
19 38 Landon Cassill Ford FR8 Auctions 196.721 48.678 0.735
20 44 Brian Scott Ford Twisted Tea 196.624 48.702 0.759
21 20 Matt Kenseth Toyota Dollar General 196.608 48.706 0.763
22 78 Martin Truex Jr Toyota Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats 196.556 48.719 0.776
23 19 Carl Edwards Toyota Arris 196.552 48.720 0.777
24 11 Denny Hamlin Toyota FedEx Express 196.519 48.728 0.785
25 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr Ford Fifth Third Bank Ford Fusion 196.503 48.732 0.789
26 34 Chris Buescher Ford Love’s Travel Stops / CSX-Play it Safe 196.310 48.780 0.837
27 5 Kasey Kahne Chevrolet Farmers Insurance 196.290 48.785 0.842
28 15 Clint Bowyer Chevrolet AccuDoc Solutions 196.258 48.793 0.850
29 14 Ty Dillon Chevrolet 195.884 48.886 0.943
30 43 Aric Almirola Ford Fresh From Florida 195.804 48.906 0.963
31 2 Brad Keselowski Ford Miller Lite 195.744 48.921 0.978
32 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr Chevrolet Nationwide 195.150 49.070 1.127
33 23 David Ragan Toyota Schluter Systems 194.638 49.199 1.256
34 32 Bobby Labonte Ford RIMROCK DEVLIN 194.638 49.199 1.256
35 *30 Josh Wise Chevrolet Curtis Key Plumbing 194.551 49.221 1.278
36 46 Michael Annett Chevrolet Pilot Flying J 194.456 49.245 1.302
37 83 Matt DiBenedetto Toyota Dustless Blasting 193.326 49.533 1.59
38 31 Ryan Newman Chevrolet Caterpillar 192.591 49.722 1.779
39 48 Jimmie Johnson Chevrolet Lowe's 191.739 49.943 2.000
40 47 AJ Allmendinger Chevrolet Kroger / Hungry Jack / Crisco 191.708 49.951 2.008
41 7 Regan Smith Chevrolet Golden Corral Chevrolet 187.820 50.985 3.042

Practice 2: Full results

Pos. Car # Driver Manufacturer Sponsor Speed Time Behind
1 22 Joey Logano Ford Shell Pennzoil 196.29 48.785 Leader
2 *21 Ryan Blaney Ford Motorcraft / Quick Lane Tire + Auto Center 196.238 48.798 0.013
3 24 Chase Elliott Chevrolet NAPA Auto Parts 196.185 48.811 0.026
4 10 Danica Patrick Chevrolet Aspen Dental 195.094 49.084 0.299
5 44 Brian Scott Ford Twisted Tea 195.003 49.107 0.322
6 5 Kasey Kahne Chevrolet Farmers Insurance 193.854 49.398 0.613
7 88 Dale Earnhardt Jr Chevrolet Nationwide 193.584 49.467 0.682
8 6 Trevor Bayne Ford Advocare Ford Fusion 192.688 49.697 0.912
9 3 Austin Dillon Chevrolet Dow – Energy & Water / Intellifresh 191.919 49.896 1.111
10 41 Kurt Busch Chevrolet Monster Energy 191.777 49.933 1.148
11 2 Brad Keselowski Ford Miller Lite 191.700 49.953 1.168
12 27 Paul Menard Chevrolet Moen / Menards 191.325 50.051 1.266
13 13 Casey Mears Chevrolet GEICO 191.206 50.082 1.297
14 31 Ryan Newman Chevrolet Caterpillar 191.18 50.089 1.304
15 11 Denny Hamlin Toyota FedEx Express 191.004 50.135 1.350
16 14 Ty Dillon Chevrolet 190.662 50.225 1.440
17 34 Chris Buescher Ford Love’s Travel Stops / CSX-Play it Safe 190.060 50.384 1.599
18 20 Matt Kenseth Toyota Dollar General 189.936 50.417 1.632
19 17 Ricky Stenhouse Jr Ford Fifth Third Bank Ford Fusion 189.906 50.425 1.640
20 1 Jamie McMurray Chevrolet McDonald's 189.864 50.436 1.651
21 46 Michael Annett Chevrolet Pilot Flying J 189.601 50.506 1.721
22 78 Martin Truex Jr Toyota Bass Pro Shops/Tracker Boats 189.545 50.521 1.736
23 42 Kyle Larson Chevrolet Target 189.395 50.561 1.776
24 38 Landon Cassill Ford FR8 Auctions 189.174 50.62 1.835
25 *35 David Gilliland Ford Shaw's Southern Belle Seafood 188.924 50.687 1.902
26 43 Aric Almirola Ford Fresh From Florida 188.790 50.723 1.938
27 7 Regan Smith Chevrolet Golden Corral Chevrolet 188.667 50.756 1.971
28 32 Bobby Labonte Ford RIMROCK DEVLIN 188.597 50.775 1.990
29 *55 Michael Waltrip Chevrolet Peak & BlueDEF Toyota Camry 188.452 50.814 2.029
30 *98 Cole Whitt Toyota RticCoolers.com 188.445 50.816 2.031
31 83 Matt DiBenedetto Toyota Dustless Blasting 188.086 50.913 2.128
32 47 AJ Allmendinger Chevrolet Kroger / Hungry Jack / Crisco 188.026 50.929 2.144
33 23 David Ragan Toyota Schluter Systems 187.997 50.937 2.152
34 15 Clint Bowyer Chevrolet AccuDoc Solutions 187.978 50.942 2.157
35 *30 Josh Wise Chevrolet Curtis Key Plumbing 186.209 51.426 2.641

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