Harvick, Keselowski fastest in second Cup practice at PIR

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Kevin Harvick and Brad Keselowski continued to be practically joined at the hip, finishing 1-2 in Saturday morning’s second of three weekend Sprint Cup practices at Phoenix International Raceway.

In Friday’s first practice session, Harvick was fastest and Keselowski was third-fastest.

In qualifying Friday afternoon, Keselowski earned the outside pole, while Harvick was third.

And in Saturday’s second practice, Harvick and Keselowski were the only two drivers to surpass 138 mph around the one-mile track.

Talk about close: Harvick was just .016 of a second faster than Keselowski, the former at 138.403 mph, the latter at 138.387 mph.

As for the other six Chasers, Jeff Gordon was sixth-fastest (137.336 mph), Matt Kenseth was 10th (137.221), current Sprint Cup points leader Joey Logano was 12th (137.028), Sunday’s pole sitter Denny Hamlin was 20th (136.737) and Ryan Newman was 25th (136.364).

Carl Edwards continued to hunt for speed, being the slowest Chaser, clocking in at 29th-fastest of the 41 cars that took to the track. Edwards’ best lap was 135.967 mph.

As for other drivers:

Kurt Busch didn’t let Friday’s news about his alleged involvement in a domestic abuse case affect him behind the wheel, recording the third-fastest speed in Saturday’s practice at 137.762 mph.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. was fourth-fastest (137.588), followed by Tony Stewart (137.336), Kyle Larson was seventh (137.295), followed by Kyle Busch (137.253), Casey Mears (137.226), Paul Menard was 11th (137.044), Martin Truex Jr. was 13th (137.018), followed by Clint Bowyer (136.877), Kasey Kahne (136.789), AJ Allmendinger (136.752) and Texas winner Jimmie Johnson was 19th-fastest (136.742).

The third and final session – Happy Hour – takes place from 2:30 to 3:20 pm ET/12:30 to 1:20 pm MT.

Follow me @JerryBonkowski

With tree in tow, Robert Wickens is already in the Christmas spirit

Robert Wickens' official Twitter page
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It may be a week before Thanksgiving, but IndyCar driver Robert Wickens is already obviously in a festive Christmas mood.

Wickens took to Twitter and Instagram Wednesday to post a video showing he just gave himself an early yuletide present: a Christmas tree:

“Got myself a tree! I figured it’s time to get into the Christmas spirit! It’s a very real tree and my arms are itchy to prove it!”

He even ended his tweet with a Christmas tree emoji.

And for good measure, Wickens — wearing a winter ski cap with his name on it — and some of the staff at his rehab facility broke into an impromptu version of “Oh, Christmas Tree!”

Check out what Wickens posted and enjoy a little early Christmas cheer sure to put a smile on your face: