Gragson leads eventful practice in Cup’s first visit to Iowa Speedway

Noah Gragson was fastest in Friday’s NASCAR Cup Series practice at Iowa Speedway — a session highlighted by numerous tire issues.

Gragson went to the top of the board late on at 137.988mph (22.828s). Cup Series teams were given an extended practice, 50 minutes, because it is the first visit for the series to the facility.

Ty Gibbs was second fastest at 136.559mph. Gibbs was one of five drivers who had tire issues.

Alex Bowman was third at 136.334mph, Justin Haley, fourth at 136.269mph, Chase Elliott, fifth at 135.881mph and Ross Chastain, sixth at 135.799mph.

Gibbs, Christopher Bell, Chastain, and Austin Cindric each had a tire go down that resulted in four red flags. Gibbs, Bell, and Cindric had right-front tire issues.


The No. 54 was fortunate enough to have his tire go down off Turn 2, allowing him to stay off the wall, but his Joe Gibbs Racing teammate, Bell, hit the wall in Turn 4 and is going to a backup car for Sunday’s race.

Cindric hit the Turn 2 wall in his Team Penske car after his tire went down. He, too, will be going to a backup car for the race.

Chastain suffered a flat left rear tire in his Trackhouse Racing car and stopped on the backstretch. NASCAR put Chastain’s car on a dolly and towed it to the garage to avoid further damaging it by dragging it around the racetrack.

23XI Racing’s Tyler Reddick was the fifth driver to have an issue. Reddick, however, caught the right front going down and brought his car to pit road in the final minutes of practice before it resulted in an on-track incident.

Harrison Burton ran seventh at 135.782mph, Denny Hamlin, eighth at 135.735mph, Austin Dillon, ninth at 135.688mph and Chase Briscoe completed the top 10 at 135.554mph.

There are 36 drivers entered in the Iowa Corn 350.

Reddick was fastest in the best 10 consecutive lap average over Chastain, Bowman, Kyle Larson, Hamlin, Briscoe, Bell, Daniel Suarez, and Kyle Busch.

NEXT: Cup Series qualifying at 1:05 p.m. ET Saturday (USA).

Story originally appeared on Racer