Championship Contenders Fastest At Pocono

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Dale Earnhardt, Jr. registered the fastest time in practice Friday at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa. (HHP/Harold Hinson Photo)
Dale Earnhardt, Jr. registered the fastest time in practice Friday at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pa. (HHP/Harold Hinson Photo)

LONG POND, Pa. – NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship leaders Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and Matt Kenseth paced practice Friday at Pocono Raceway.

Earnhardt put his No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet at the top of the heap during the second practice session Friday, clocking in at 50.712 seconds (177.441 mph).

Kenseth, who is second behind Earnhardt in the championship standings, was second fastest in his No. 17 Roush Fenway Racing Ford with a fast time of 50.855 seconds (176.974 mph).

Completing the top five in the final practice session of the day were Greg Biffle, Kyle Busch and Carl Edwards.

Speeds were up considerably from the first practice session of the day, with many teams using the second practice to prepare for qualifying Saturday morning.

Jimmie Johnson was fastest in the first practice session, registering a fast time of 51.638 seconds (174.290 mph).

Busch, Edwards, Kenseth and Biffle completed the top five.

John Wes Townley, who was scheduled to make his series debut in the No. 32 FAS Lane Racing Ford, was unceremoniously removed from the car after hitting the wall during his warmup lap in the first practice.

Jason White will now drive the No. 32 Ford in place of Townley.

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