Jeb Burton, Ryan Blaney fastest in Thursday’s two Truck series practices at Kansas

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The NASCAR Camping World Truck Series has not been on a race track for nearly six weeks, the last time being March 29 at Martinsville Speedway.

But even with the lengthy layoff, Jeb Burton and Ryan Blaney proved that the time off didn’t affect them adversely, as they were atop the heap of the two NCWTS practice sessions held Thursday afternoon at Kansas Speedway.

Burton put his No. 13 Toyota at the top of the speed charts in the first afternoon practice, covering the 1.5-mile Kansas Speedway layout at 175.530 mph.

Ryan Blaney was second-fastest (175.165 mph), followed by Brian Ickler (174.820), Matt Crafton (174.769) and Ben Kennedy (174.735).

Sixth through 10th in the first session were Kyle Busch (174.689), Joey Logano (174.627), Darrell “Bubba” Wallace Jr. (174.312), German Quiroga Jr. (173.801) and series veteran Ron Hornaday Jr. (173.734).

Only 28 trucks took part in the first practice, with Charles Lewandowski (160.671) and Norm Benning (157.054) the slowest of the bunch.

As for the second practice, Blaney had the fastest overall speed of the day at 176.148 mph, followed closely by Ben Kennedy (176.016 mph).

Joey Logano was third-fastest in the second session (175.063), followed by Timothy Peters (174.712) and Kyle Busch (174.678).

Sixth- through 10th-fastest were Burton (174.667), Austin Dillon (174.644), Tayler Malsam (174.312), Crafton (174.222) and Quiroga (174.087).

A total of 29 drivers took to the track for the latter session, with Scott Stenzel (28th-fastest, 157.159 mph) and Ryan Ellis (29th-fastest, 156.074 mph) as the only drivers failing to eclipse 160 mph.

NCWTS qualifying takes place Friday at 4:40 pm ET, with the SFP 250 race slated to take the green flag at 8:30 p.m. ET.

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Hartley says debut F1 point would be ‘a dream’ from last on grid

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Brendon Hartley says scoring a point on his Formula 1 debut would be “a dream” after being resigned to last place on the grid for the United States Grand Prix following an engine penalty.

Porsche factory driver Hartley was drafted in by Toro Rosso to replace Pierre Gasly for the USGP when the Frenchman was ruled out due to clashing commitments in Super Formula.

Despite having not driven an F1 car since 2012, Hartley came within one-tenth of a second of making it through to Q2 on Saturday at the Circuit of The Americas, ultimately qualifying 18th.

“Obviously I’d love to be quicker but we knew we were starting at the back, so we put a lot of focus on long runs, getting the peak performance out of this Pirelli tire I didn’t get today,” Hartley told NBCSN after the race.

“In FP3 I had a good feeling. There’s a lot of quirky things to manage with these tires. Honestly I should be happy with how the weekend’s gone so far.”

The New Zealander will start last due to a 25-place grid penalty for changes made to his power unit ahead of practice on Friday, and is daring to dream of making the top 10 in his first race out of a sports car for more than five years.

“I don’t do the 24 hours completely alone!” Hartley joked. “It’s quick. It’s physical to drive. I’ll be happy to be done after an hour and a half.

“A point would be a dream starting from the back. If I can move forward and put a race together, I’ll be happy.”

The United States Grand Prix is live on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app from 2pm ET on Sunday.