NASCAR: RCR, Roush teams looking strong in NNS practice at Kentucky


While the NASCAR Sprint Cup and Camping World Truck Series are up in New Hampshire, the Nationwide Series has started its stand-alone weekend at Kentucky Speedway with a pair of Friday practice sessions for the 300.

If the sessions are an indication, Richard Childress Racing and Roush Fenway Racing will be in the hunt come tomorrow night on the 1.5-mile oval outside Cincinnati.

RFR’s Chris Buescher led the first practice earlier this afternoon with a lap of 174.701 mph in the No. 60 Ford Mustang. But right behind him were all three of RCR’s full-time Nationwide drivers: Brian Scott (pictured, 173.980) in second, Brendan Gaughan (173.210) in third, and rookie Ty Dillon in fourth (173.205).

The second practice largely followed the same script, only with RCR part-timer Cale Conley atop the leaderboard with a lap of 175.404 mph in his No. 33 Chevy Camaro.

Trevor Bayne of RFR was second at 175.239 mph, then came Scott in third (175.075), Joe Gibbs Racing’s Sam Hornish Jr. in fourth (174.944), and Buescher again in fifth (174.419).

Hornish may be able to put himself into the mix, however, as he was fifth in the first practice, too. And of course, we can’t forget Nationwide Series points leader Chase Elliott, who had the eighth-fastest time in both sessions.

Elliott holds an 18-point advantage over JR Motorsports teammate Regan Smith going into Saturday night’s main event. Smith, who has never finished higher than 12th in a Nationwide event at Kentucky, was 12th and 16th-fastest today.

Team Penske’s No. 22 Ford won both NNS events last year at Kentucky, and this weekend, it’s in the hands of Michael McDowell. He went 11th-fastest in each of the practices.

Qualifying will go off tomorrow afternoon at 4:10 p.m. ET, followed by the 300-mile race at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Seattle Supercross by the numbers: Three riders separated by 17 points


Three riders remain locked in a tight battle with 17 points separating the leader Cooper Webb from third-place Chase Sexton and these are only a few Supercross numbers to consider entering Seattle.

Seattle Supercross numbers
Chase Sexton made a statement in Detroit with his second win of 2023. – Feld Motor Sports

For the fifth time in 10 rounds. Sexton, Webb, and Eli Tomac shared the podium in Detroit. Between them, the trio has taken 23 podiums, leaving only seven for the remainder of the field. Jason Anderson, Ken Roczen and Justin Barcia have two each with Aaron Plessinger scoring the other.

Webb and Tomac won the last four championships with two apiece in alternating years, but they were not one another’s primary rival for most of those seasons. On the average, however, the past four years show an incredible similarity with average points earned of 21.0 for Webb and 21.3 for Tomac. With five wins so far this season, Tomac (23 wins) leads Webb (19) in victories but Webb (43) edges Tomac (41) in podium finishes during this span.

Tomac has won two of the last three Seattle races and those two wins in this stadium are topped only by James Stewart. Fittingly, if Tomac gets a third win this week, he will tie Stewart for second on the all-time wins’ list. Tomac tied Ricky Carmichael for third with 48 wins at Oakland and took sole possession of that spot with his Daytona win.

Sexton still has a lot to say and after winning last week in Detroit, he is speaking up. The Supercross numbers are against him entering Seattle, however, because a points’ deficit this large after Round 10 has been erased only once. In 1983 David Bailey was 47 points behind Bob Hannah, and like Sexton he was also in third place. Bailey took the points’ lead with one race remaining.

The seven points Sexton was penalized last week for jumping in a red cross flag section in Detroit could prove extremely costly.

In fact, it has been a series of mistakes that has cost Sexton the most. In the last two weeks, he lost 10 points with a 10th-place finish to go with his penalty. Erase those, and all three riders hold their fate in their hands.

Plessinger’s heartbreak in Detroit is still fresh, but the upside of his run is that was his best of the season and could turn his fortunes around. Prior to that race, he led only seven laps in three mains. He was up front for 20 laps in Detroit with five of those being the fastest on the track.

Last week’s win by Hunter Lawrence tied him with his brother Jett Lawrence for 17th on the all-time wins’ list. With the focus shifting to 250 West for the next two rounds, Jett has a great opportunity to pull back ahead. The real test will be at the first East / West Showdown in East Rutherford, New Jersey on April 22.

Last Five Seattle Winners

2022: Eli Tomac
2019: Marvin Musquin
2018: Eli Tomac
2017: Marvin Musquin
2014: Ryan Villopoto

2022: Hunter Lawrence
2019: Dylan Ferrandis
2018: Aaron Plessinger
2017: Aaron Plessinger
2014: Cole Seely

By the Numbers

Anaheim 2
San Diego

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Chase Sexton wins in Detroit, penalized seven points