The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series took to the track at Las Vegas Motor Speedway for the first test session of the 2018 season. It was a big day for Team Chevy. They are debuting the new Chevy Camaro ZL1 car this year. Chase Elliott (Hendrick Motorsports) participated in a tire test earlier in January at Texas Motor Speedway, but the team said they did not get to learn much from the car. It was much different today since 16 drivers (One driver from each organization) participated in the test session.
The drivers who were driver the cars today included: Kyle Larson (Chip Ganassi Racing), Brad Keselowski (Team Penske), Erik Jones (Joe Gibbs Racing), Kurt Busch (Stewart-Haas Racing), Darrell Wallace Jr. (Richard Petty Motorsports), William Byron (Hendrick Motorsports), Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (Roush Fenway Racing), Paul Menard (Wood Brothers Racing), Ryan Newman (Richard Childress Racing), Ty Dillon (Germain Racing), Chris Buescher (JTG Daugherty Racing), Kasey Kahne (Leavine Family Racing), Cole Custer (Go Fas Racing), Justin Allgaier (Team Chevy), David Ragan (Team Ford), David Herring (Team Toyota).
The Top speeds in the morning practice (according to JeffGluck.com) were:
- Willaim Byron
- Ryan Newman
- Kurt Busch
- Kyle Larson
- Erik Jones
- Brad Keselowski
- Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
- Kasey Kahne
- Darrell Wallace Jr.
- Chris Buescher
*Times were unofficial
The drivers seemed to be very excited to get back on the track.
Darrell Wallace Jr. said, “Didn’t think I’d have to question myself when climbing back in for the first time since Chicago, but I did. It’s been a long time. Feels good to be back!”
Kyle Larson said, “I could not tell much about the new car. It felt about the same. The lap times were about the same. It will probably run a lot different in traffic.”
Brad Keselowski said, “You really never can tell who has the speed at these tests. Some do not bring their best stuff. Team Penske is known for that. We always bring a car that is a few generations back because we want our guys working on the cars for the race and not the practice cars.”
You can see more of the driver’s interviews on the Las Vegas Motor Speedway Facebook Page.
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