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Stewart, Larson top Sprint Cup practices at Kansas

May 09, 2014, Staff report, NASCAR.com

Stewart, Larson top Sprint Cup practices at Kansas
Three-time champion, rookie phenom set pace on 1.5-mile track

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KANSAS: 5-hour Energy 400 entry list | Sprint Cup Series standings

Practice 1 | Results

Rookie Kyle Larson set the early pace Friday afternoon at Kansas Speedway, topping opening practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

Larson, driving the No. 42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet, turned a fast lap of 189.076 mph on the 1.5-mile track. He clocked the fast time in the 20th of the 61 laps he ran -- second-most of any driver -- in the 90-minute session.

Aric Almirola was second-fastest (188.620 mph) in the No. 43 Richard Petty Motorsports Ford in preparation for Saturday night's 5-hour Energy 400 (7:30 p.m. ET, FOX). Clint Bowyer, Dave Blaney and Kasey Kahne completed the top five on the speed chart.

Sprint Cup points leader Jeff Gordon -- a two-time Kansas winner -- posted the ninth-fastest lap in the No. 24 Hendrick Motorsports Chevy. Defending race winner Matt Kenseth was just 28th-fastest in the No. 20 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota.

Ryan Blaney, attempting to make his Sprint Cup debut Saturday, turned the 17th-fastest lap in the Team Penske No. 12 Ford.

Coors Light Pole Qualifying for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series is scheduled at 6:40 p.m. ET (FOX Sports 1).

Practice 2 | Results

Tony Stewart bumped hometown favorite Clint Bowyer from the No. 1 spot on the leaderboard to lead final NASCAR Sprint Cup Series practice at Kansas Speedway.

Stewart, in the No. 14 Stewart-Haas Racing Chevrolet, turned a fast lap at 192.809 mph on the 1.5-mile track in preparation for Saturday night's 5-hour Energy 400 (7:30 p.m. ET, FOX). He was among five drivers faster than the track qualifying record of 191.864 mph set by defending race winner Matt Kenseth here last spring.

Bowyer, in the No. 15 Michael Waltrip Racing Toyota, settled for second place at 192.321 mph after Stewart clocked his fast time at the end of the 50-minute session. Defending series champ Jimmie Johnson, a two-time winner at Kansas, was third-fastest at 192.239 mph in the No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet.

Rookie Kyle Larson backed up his fast time in opening practice with a fourth-best performance in the final practice. Kevin Harvick, Stewart's teammate and a two-time winner this season, completed the top five.

Sprint Cup points leader Jeff Gordon was sixth-fastest. Kenseth replicated his position on the leaderboard from early practice -- 28th. Rookie Ryan Blaney, aiming to make his Sprint Cup debut Saturday night, did the same with the 17th-fastest lap.