When driving for Richard Childress Racing last season, Tyler Reddick showed immense strength on road courses, winning events at Road America and Indy’s Road Course.
Judging by the speeds in Friday’s NASCAR Cup Series practice from Circuit of The Americas – the only one ahead of Sunday’s EchoPark Automotive Grand Prix – it appears that strength came from the driver.
Reddick, driving the No. 45 Toyota Camry TRD for 23XI Racing, paced Friday’s extended practice session with a time of 132.016 seconds (92.988mph), leading the session by a whopping half-second over second-place Kyle Larson.
Ross Chastain, the series’ defending winner at Circuit of The Americas, finished the 50-minute session in third, while Kyle Busch and Daniel Suarez completed the top five in the practice session.
At Phoenix, NASCAR announced that this weekend’s event would become an ‘extended practice weekend’, with the NASCAR Cup Series given a 50-minute practice session, in order to get acclimated to the new aero package for short tracks and road courses.
Michael McDowell clocked in sixth place throughout the session, with Austin Cindric putting his Team Penske Ford Mustang in seventh. Bubba Wallace was eighth, while last week’s winner, Joey Logano, clocked in ninth.
Jordan Taylor, making his NASCAR Cup Series debut this weekend as an interim driver for Chase Elliott, completed the top-10 in the practice session, after making his first laps in a NASCAR Cup Series entry.
Jenson Button, piloting the No. 15 for Rick Ware Racing, went 28th in the series’ practice session, while Kimi Raikkonen ended up 32nd in his second start in Trackhouse Racing’s PROJECT 91 entry.
Friday’s NASCAR Cup Series practice session will be shown on tape delay at 8:00 PM ET on FS1, after the completion of both NASCAR Truck Series and NASCAR Xfinity Series practice and qualifying from Circuit of The Americas.