Saturday, March 23, 2013

California Practice Notes: Good Luck catching the Toyota's

Matt Kenseth should be very good Sunday
Mark Martin was fastest in the final practice session at Auto Club Speedway Saturday -- the final chance for the 43 drivers and crews to maximize speed before Sunday's Auto Club 400. Martin not only had the fastest individual lap (183.351) during happy hour, but he was also fastest in five and 10-consecutive lap averages. Martin is a past winner at the roomy two-mile track, but it came in 1998, the second Cup race ever held at Fontana.

Toyotas led the way with the top three times during happy hour. Martin's MWR teammate Clint Bowyer was second fastest, followed by JGR's Matt Kenseth. Jimmie Johnson was the fastest Chevy with the fourth quickest lap, followed by Brad Keselowski's Ford in fifth.

Although Las Vegas and California are two completely different tracks, they are both downforce tracks, and a lot of what was learned at Las Vegas can be applied this week for the still-unknown Gen-6 car. Three-time Fontana winner Matt Kenseth stole the Las Vegas win two weeks ago and gets high marks this week because of it. It also helps that Kenseth is pretty fast as well.

Johnson hasn't struck fear into the rest of the field yet this season in his Gen-6 car, but his Fontana resume might do it alone. The El Cajon, Ca. native is a five-time winner at his home track with a track-best 5.4 average finish in 18 starts.

Overall, despite's Johnson's record, it looks like the Toyotas will be tough to beat on Sunday.
Read more here......Final Driver Ratings

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