Making the most of an off week, Turner Scott Motorsports' and JR Motorsports' NASCAR Nationwide Series drivers took an early run at Texas Motor Speedway to prepare for next weekend's race. Series rookie Kyle Larson ran his first laps around the 1.5-mile track, while Turner Scott teammates Nelson Piquet Jr. and Justin Allgaier and JRM drivers Kasey Kahne, Regan Smith and Brad Sweet got a better feel for how their cars would handle at the Fort Worth track.
"It means a lot because this is my first time here," Larson said. "When we come back next week I will have already had laps on the track so I should be able to start off practice a little better. Most places that I haven't gone to before, I spend the first two or three runs trying to get used to the track. When I come back we will start off right away working on the car rather than me working on how to get around the track."
Larson has already raced on multiple tracks for the first time this year, finishing in the top 10 at both Auto Club Speedway and Bristol Motor Speedway. He is currently seventh in the standings, seven spots ahead of Piquet Jr., who has never been to Texas in a Nationwide car.
"We are trying to test as much as we can and try to learn as much as we can because it is very important for us," Piquet Jr. said. "Coming over here one or two days before the race gets us closer to big teams like Roush (Fenway Racing), (Joe) Gibbs (Racing), RCR (Richard Childress Racing), which have a lot of information. This for sure helps us a lot and is very beneficial for us. When we get these days we have to make the most out of them."
While the track may be more familiar to their teammate, Allgaier still had plenty to think about during his time on the track.
"The biggest thing we've looked at is how the tires match up to the race track," he said. "How our cars are going to run. We have the new Camaro. This is the first time that Turner Scott has come here with the new Camaro and obviously Texas is fast. It is one of the fastest mile-and-a-halves that we go to. It's fun, but we are just trying to get a good balance of the car and see how the car changes throughout the day."
Texas will host the first night race of the Nationwide Series season Friday, April 12 at 8:30 p.m. ET.
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