Kenseth leads “Apache Warrior 400” practice session | Dover International Speedway

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September 29, 2017

Kenseth leads “Apache Warrior 400” practice session

It’s crunch time in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoffs, with little margin for error as the first elimination race takes the green flag on Sunday.

Kyle Larson prepares for Friday’s practice session at Dover International Speedway. GETTY IMAGES

Playoff participants posted the top nine speeds on Friday during the first practice session for the “Apache Warrior 400 presented by Lucas Oil” Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoff race.

Matt Kenseth, a three-time Dover race winner, led the field with a lap of 162.550 mph, with Kyle Larson just behind with a lap of 162.023 mph.

Four drivers will be eliminated from playoff contention following Sunday’s race. Three drivers on the bubble, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., Austin Dillon and Ryan Newman are separated by just one point.

“For me, it’s go as hard as you can, and the points will take care of themselves,” said Newman, a three-time Dover race winner who posted the 11th quickest time in the early practice session.

Among playoff  drivers, Dillon had the slowest speed with a lap of 158.702 mph, good for just 27th fastest among the 40 cars that posted a time.

Daniel Suarez was the quickest of the drivers outside the playoffs, turning a lap of 161.240 in 10th place.

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