KANSAS CITY, KAN. (AP) - Matt Kenseth proved during the final practice for Sunday’s race at Kansas Speedway that the track-record qualifying lap that landed him on the pole was no fluke.
Kenseth turned the fastest lap of 188.72 mph during the second of two practice sessions on Saturday to sit atop the speed chart. His lap of 191.864 mph on Friday shattered the track record.
Aric Almirola, who will roll off sixth, was the next-fastest in practice, followed by Juan Pablo Montoya, who is trying to end a streak of bad luck that has plagued him most of the season.
Defending Sprint Cup champion Brad Keselowski and Penske Racing teammate Joey Logano were still searching for speed after poor qualifying runs, and with the specter of heavy sanctions hanging over them after NASCAR inspectors found unapproved parts on their cars last weekend at Texas.
Penske is appealing the penalties, so both of the teams are at full strength. But that hasn’t helped them on the track _ Keselowski’s best lap in the final practice was 186.522 mph, just 26th fastest, while Logano’s lap of 185.618 was only good for 32nd.
Jeff Gordon, who will start last after a qualifying crash, was 35th-fastest. David Stremme had engine trouble late in practice, sending a plume of white smoke out of the back of his car.