Credit: Rainier Ehrhardt/Getty Images

Despite us not being able to see the cars on the track that much this weekend, there were three practice sessions and a bunch of numbers that we now have to decipher. With New Hampshire Motor Speedway being only a 1-mile race track, the teams put a bunch of laps on in practice, so don’t be disturbed if you see a high number in the “Laps Ran” below. Qualifying was on Friday and Jeff Gordon won the pole. The full starting lineup for the Sylvania 300 can be found by clicking here.

Important Practice Notes: 1st practice on Saturday notes (click here). Happy Hour notes (click here).

 Average Practice Speeds:

Average practice speeds are calculated by taking the average speed of each driver in each practice and multiplying it by the number of laps ran. When you do this for each practice and add the  totals together, and then divide by the total number of laps ran, you get an average of their practice speed, instead of just the one lap statistic you see when you look at practice sheets. I have found over the years that this is much more accurate as to whether or not someone has a car that is good for one lap or one that can consistently be fast. These numbers, however, can be skewed if a team puts new tires on frequently or rarely changes the tires. Note: The chart below includes the speeds from the 2nd and final practice sessions of the weekend. The speeds from the first practice session on Friday included qualifying runs.

Rank Driver Laps Ran Avg Speed (MPH)
1. Denny Hamlin 81 130.745
2. Brian Vickers 78 129.783
3. Kevin Harvick 85 129.775
4. Joey Logano 85 129.621
5. Kyle Busch 86 129.447
6. Clint Bowyer 84 129.381
7. Brad Keselowski 78 129.307
8. Tony Stewart 84 129.265
9. Jeff Burton 80 129.255
10. Ryan Newman 103 129.245
11. Regan Smith 70 129.230
12. Paul Menard 75 129.135
13. Jeff Gordon 73 129.094
14. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 91 129.090
15. Martin Truex Jr. 70 129.058
16. Aric Almirola 79 129.003
17. Carl Edwards 61 128.986
18. Jimmie Johnson 74 128.758
19. Kasey Kahne 54 128.685
20. Dave Blaney 79 128.562
21. Michael McDowell 16 128.553
22. Marcos Ambrose 69 128.459
23. Kurt Busch 68 128.452
24. Jamie McMurray 67 128.421
25. Matt Kenseth 64 128.408
26. Juan Pablo Montoya 54 128.199
27. Greg Biffle 69 128.156
28. Bobby Labonte 69 128.033
29. Landon Cassill 87 128.007
30. David Ragan 66 127.921
31. Scott Speed 45 127.553
32. Travis Kvapil 77 127.357
33. J.J. Yeley 23 127.287
34. David Gilliland 66 126.918
35. Reed Sorenson 24 126.724
36. David Reutimann 44 126.648
37. Casey Mears 41 126.627
38. Stephen Leicht 23 126.581
39. David Stremme 18 126.059
40. Kelly Bires 13 126.052
41. Joe Nemechek 13 125.726
42. Mike Olsen 86 124.829
43. Tony Raines 4 124.149

In the first practice session (Friday), the five fastest drivers were:
1. Denny Hamlin – 134.820 mph
2. Jeff Gordon – 134.174 mph
3. Regan Smith – 134.009 mph
4. Tony Stewart – 133.891 mph
5. Kevin Harvick – 133.872 mph
Click here for the complete results from this practice.

In the second practice session (first on Saturday), the quickest cars were:
1. Denny Hamlin – 131.656 mph
2. Joey Logano – 131.442 mph
3. Jimmie Johnson – 131.370 mph
4. Martin Truex, Jr. – 131.338 mph
5. Kyle Busch – 131.266 mph
Click here for the complete results from this practice.

In terms of ten-lap average, the top five for the second practice were:
1. Jeff Gordon – 130.373 mph
2. Clint Bowyer – 130.135 mph
3. Joey Logano – 130.079 mph
4. Paul Menard – 130.024 mph
5. Kevin Harvick – 130.014 mph
Click here for the complete ten-lap average chart for the second practice.

In “Happy Hour”, the fast five were:
1. Denny Hamlin – 132.053 mph
2. Joey Logano – 131.683 mph
3. Brian Vickers – 131.551 mph
4. Kyle Busch – 131.207 mph
5. Martin Truex, Jr. – 131.157 mph
Click here for the complete results from this practice.

When it came to ten-lap average, the best for Happy Hour were:
1. Denny Hamlin – 130.879 mph
2. Kyle Busch – 130.454 mph
3. Clint Bowyer – 130.306 mph
4. Joey Logano – 130.295 mph
5. Matt Kenseth – 130.152 mph
Click here for the complete ten-lap average chart for Happy Hour.