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Chase Elliott
Matt Sullivan | Getty Images

Elliott, Bowman lead practice sessions at Watkins Glen

Defending race winner Chase Elliott recorded the fastest practice lap in the final 50-minute session at Watkins Glen International, moving his No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet around the track at 126.901 mph on Saturday afternoon.

Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Martin Truex Jr. and Kyle Busch also cracked the top five in the session, with Truex racing his No. 19 Toyota 125.418 mph for second-fastest and Busch moving his No. 18 Toyota 125.074 mph for fifth-fastest.

RELATED: Sort through 5- and 10-lap averages | Final practice results

Matt DiBenedetto, who led for most of the practice until a late-run surge, was third-fastest in his  No. 95 Leavine Family Racing Toyota at 125.391 mph.

Michael McDowell was fourth in the session after his No. 34 Front Row Motorsports Ford went around the 2.45-mile road course 125.259 mph.

The Monster Energy Series returns to the track at 6:40 p.m. ET for Busch Pole Qualifying (NBCSN/NBC Sports App) to determine the starting order for Sunday’s GoBowling at The Glen (3 p.m. ET on NBCSN/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

FIRST PRACTICE
Alex Bowman snuck in the fastest first Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series practice lap just as the 50-minute session was concluding at Watkins Glen International on Saturday, wheeling his No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet around the 2.45-mile road course at 125.888 mph.

Bowman, who made the final lap in qualifying trim, edged out Kyle Busch for the fastest time. Busch recorded a fast lap of 125.786 mph in his No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota on Saturday morning, just ahead of teammate Denny Hamlin in the No. 11 JGR Toyota at 125.643 mph.

RELATED: First practice results

Defending race winner Chase Elliott was fourth-fastest at 125.623 mph in the No. 9 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet, while Kyle Larson rounded out the top five in the No. 42 Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet at 125.568 mph in the practice session in advance of Sunday’s GoBowling at The Glen (3 p.m. ET on NBCSN/NBC Sports App, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio)

The caution came out briefly when Matt Tifft spun his No. 36 Ford coming out of the carousel about seven minutes into the 50-minute session, and Elliott had to maneuver quickly to the left to avoid wrecking. Neither car made impact with anything, but Tifft brought his car to the garage before returning to the track.