Martin Truex Jr leads practice for season-opening Daytona 500

Martin Truex Jr led the way during Saturday’s pair of NASCAR Cup practice sessions for the 2019 Daytona 500.

Truex set his session-best lap speed of 195.920mph late in first practice while running together with Joe Gibbs Racing team-mates Kyle Busch and Erik Jones.

Busch ended up second (195.852mph), with Jones third (195.793mph), comfortably ahead of the chasing pack.

Last year’s Daytona 500 runner-up Darrell Wallace Jr finished quickest in second practice, which was called after 23 of the allotted 50 minutes due to rain.

His average lap speed of 195.020mph left him narrowly ahead of Ty Dillon in the session, with the pair taking fourth and fifth on the combined leaderboard.

David Raggan, Ricky Stenhouse Jr and Tyler Reddick were next up, with Brendan Gaughan and Daniel Hemric at the foot of the top 10 on the combined leaderboard.

All 42 drivers turned at least one lap during the pair of sessions, in which there were no major incidents, ahead of Sunday’s curtain-raiser.

Reigning Cup champion Joey Logano earlier led the way during the practice session open only to the 20 drivers entered into the ‘Clash’ race.

Logano posted the fastest average speed of 196.786mph in a session dominated by drivers electing mostly to draft, and marred by a four-car wreck.

Chase Elliott and Ryan Newman collided, sending both cars spinning, with Denny Hamlin and Kevin Harvick collected in the incident.

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