Carl Edwards fastest in Saturday morning Sprint Cup practice at Charlotte

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Carl Edwards was the fastest in Saturday’s next-to-last practice session for Sunday night’s Coca-Cola 600.

Edwards’ fast lap of 192.802 mph topped the speed charts, followed by AJ Allmendinger (192.383 mph).

The next three fastest drivers were Martin Truex Jr. (192.280), pole-sitter Jimmie Johnson (192.260) and outside pole-sitter Brad Keselowski (192.109).

Jeff Gordon ran an abbreviated session due to back spasms, covering just 11 laps but recording the sixth-fastest lap at 191.659 mph.

Seventh- through 10th-fastest were Kyle Busch (191.618), Ryan Newman (191.455), Marcos Ambrose (191.435) and Denny Hamlin (191.238).

Other performances of note:

* Dale Earnhardt Jr. was 15th-fastest at 190.712 mph.

* Kurt Busch, who is the first driver to attempt the Double – racing in Sunday’s Indianapolis 500 and the evening’s Coca-Cola 600 – was 26th-fastest at 189.394 mph.

* The slowest driver was Blake Koch at 181.366 mph.

The final Happy Hour practice takes place at 1 p.m. ET Saturday afternoon.

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

Red Bull Air Race: Yoshi Muroya joins Sato as Japanese champs at Indy

Photo: Joerg Mitter/Red Bull Content Pool
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Takuma Sato isn’t the only major Japanese athlete to take home top honors at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this year. Countryman Yoshihide Muroya joined him in that on Sunday after winning Red Bull Air Race at IMS, and the Red Bull Air Race World Championship in the process.

Fittingly, the 101st Indianapolis 500 champion was there on site to join him in the celebration.

Muroya flew with a track-record run in the final and erased the four-point deficit to points leader Martin Sonka. The record run came after a disappointing qualifying effort of 11th in the 14-pilot field in the Master Class.

A day after the win, Muroya joined Sato in heading to Sato’s new Verizon IndyCar Series team, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s, Indianapolis-based shop.

A few social posts from Muroya’s victory and the subsequent celebration are below.

CHECKING OUT EACH OTHER’S RIDES

ASTLES BREAKS THOUGH AS WELL

Muroya wasn’t alone among big winners at the Speedway. In the Challenger Class, Melanie Astles of France became the first woman to win a major race at IMS, and is the first female winner in the Red Bull Air Race World Championship.

Nine women have competed in the Indianapolis 500 (Janet Guthrie, Lyn St. James, Sarah Fisher, Danica Patrick, Milka Duno, Simona de Silvestro, Pippa Mann, Ana Beatriz, Katherine Legge) and Mann is the first woman to have been on the pole position at IMS, having done so for the Freedom 100 in 2010 in Indy Lights.

Photo: Joerg Mitter/Red Bull Content Pool