Commentary

Gordon posts fastest practice time at Auto Club Speedway

Jeff Gordon posted the fastest lap Saturday in the only practice session before Sunday's Auto Club 500.

Updated: February 24, 2008, 6:29 PM ET
By Terry Blount | ESPN.com

FONTANA, Calif. -- The Sprint Cup teams got one short shot to get it right before Sunday's Auto Club 500, so Jeff Gordon must feel good about his chances.

Gordon posted the fastest lap Saturday in the only practice session before the race. Gordon turned a lap at 179.569 mph in the No. 24 Chevy early in the session.

But the session lasted only 35 minutes before the rain came at Auto Club Speedway. All the teams were scrambling to try to make changes during and after the session.

Carl Edwards was second best with a lap at 197.180 in the No. 99 Ford. Matt Kenseth, who hopes to win his third consecutive Auto Club 500, was fifth on the speed chart at 178.820 mph in the No. 17 Ford.

Edwards had the best five-lap average, usually a better indication of which drivers have strong cars.

Daytona 500 winner Ryan Newman was 21st in the practice session. Dale Earnhardt Jr. was 22nd in the No. 88 Chevrolet. Earnhardt was the slowest of the four Hendrick Motorsports drivers.

Terry Blount covers motorsports for ESPN.com. He can be reached at terry@blountspeak.com.

Terry Blount

ESPN Seattle Seahawks reporter

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