Saturday, June 13, 2015

Final Michigan Practice Notes Following all Sessions: Jeff Gordon has a very strong car

Jeff Gordon had an outstanding final practice...back-to-back for No. 24?  
LAS VEGAS -- The last time the Sprint Cup series traveled through Michigan International Speedway, Jeff Gordon won for the third time of his career and first since 2001. During Saturday’s final practice session in preparation for Sunday’s Quicken Loans 400, Gordon laid down the fastest lap at 198.604 mph giving an indication that he’s a strong contender to go back-to-back.

In addition to the fast lap on the 15th of his 31 ran, he also had the second-best 10-consecutive average lap speed which shows he should be fast on the short and long runs. Over 44 starts of his marvelous career, which comes to an end following the season, he has led 1,058 laps -- the most among active drivers.

Despite the strength of Gordon’s final practice, Kevin Harvick still comes in a s the driver to beat on the basis of his body of work this season on all the big horsepower tracks and also being fastest in two of the three practices between Friday and Saturday. During Saturday’s early session that was shortened to 30-minutes because of a wet track, Harvick posted the fastest lap at 201.084 mph under cool foggy conditions. He won at Michigan and 2010 and has finished second in his past four starts there, which is in line with his 2015 trend where he’s been runner-up eight times.

Martin Truex Jr. has led the most laps in each of the past four races and finally got rewarded with a win last week at Pocono. It’s a pretty impressive sight to this single car team leading all these laps with such dominators like Harvick and Jimmie Johnson competing. He was fifth and third fastest during Saturday’s final practices, but didn’t run 10-consecutive laps. Only 11 drivers got that many laps in a row in on Saturday and Kyle Larson led the way

While you still can’t trust Larson to have a his practices translate to race day, you can’t ignore his speed on long runs. He was the only drive to run 10-consecutive in Saturday’s early session and then led the way in the 55-minute afternoon session where he also had the fourth fastest lap.

Kyle Busch came in with the second fastest lap during the final practice and should have a great day in store for him. Harvick, Truex Jr and Gordon are all going to be tough to beat, but Busch’s car just has that look of being a winner.

Read More Here......Final Driver Ratings on The Linemakers on Sporting News     

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