Chase Elliott tops first New Hampshire practice; Hamlin, Newman crash

Staff Report

Chase Elliott rose to the top spot on the Monster Energy Series leaderboard Friday afternoon, setting the pace in opening practice at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

Elliott guided the Hendrick Motorsports No. 9 Chevrolet to a best lap of 137.086 mph on the 1.058-mile track. He’ll be aiming for his second victory of the season in Sunday’s Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 (3 p.m. ET, NBCSN/NBC Sports App, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio).

RELATED: Practice 1 results | Weekend schedule

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Kyle Busch and Matt DiBenedetto tied for the second spot on the speed chart, both clocking laps of 136.874 mph. Ryan Blaney secured the fourth-fastest speed with Daniel Suarez closing out the top five.

Denny Hamlin spun late in the 50-minute session, backing the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 11 Toyota into the outside retaining wall in Turn 4. He drove back to the garage with significant rear-end damage.

Ryan Newman crashed moments later, with his Roush Fenway Racing No. 6 Ford sustaining damage on the right-rear corner.

RELATED: Hamlin, Newman suffer incidents late in practice

Busch Pole Qualifying to set the field for the 301-lap event is scheduled Friday at 4:35 p.m. ET (NBCSN/NBC Sports App, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio). Two more practice sessions are scheduled Saturday at 10:05 a.m. and 12:35 p.m. ET.

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