Hamlin sets the pace in NASCAR Cup practice at Bristol

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Denny Hamlin led the way in NASCAR Cup Series practice Friday at Bristol Motor Speedway with a lap of 125.848 mph (15.247 seconds). Hamlin was quickest over rookie Austin Cindric, who ran 125.028 mph. Joey Logano, Cindric’s teammate, was third-fastest at 124.963 mph. Kyle Busch was fourth-fastest at 124.857 mph ahead of AJ Allmendinger’s 124.784 mph in the No. 16 for Kaulig Racing. Busch went for a single car spin during practice. He did not hit anything and was missed by Austin Cindric by inches, avoiding what would have been a heavy collision for the two. There were no other incidents in practice. Christopher Bell was sixth fastest at 124.703 mph and Kyle Larson was seventh fastest at 124.695 mph. Larson is the defending race winner. Brad Keselowski was eighth fastest at 124.638 mph and Cole Custer was ninth fastest at 124.581 mph. Chase Briscoe rounded out the top 10 at 124.581 mph. The remainder of the playoff drivers in practice were Alex Bowman (12th); Ryan Blaney (13th); Kevin Harvick (15th); William Byron (16th); Ross Chastain (19th); Chase Elliott (21st); Tyler Reddick (28th); Danial Suarez (32nd); and Austin Dillon (33rd). Hamlin was also fastest in the best 10 consecutive lap average. Behind Hamlin was Allmendinger, Larson, Bell, and Aric Almirola. There are 36 teams entered in the Bass Pro Shops Night Race.

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