The Cup Series drivers hit the track just after 5 p.m. Friday in practice for the Sprint Unlimited. It's the start of a busy weekend for Jimmie Johnson, who will run a half marathon in and around Saturday night's race and Sunday's qualifying session for the Daytona 500.
“I needed a race to keep me engaged in training and really enjoyed the process building up to running the event. If I want to compete any more throughout the year I got to find a situation like what we have on Sunday where we race on Saturday night and do an event Sunday. I have some triathlon goals that I want to reach and hit. It's going to require me to race in a racecar Saturday night, then do something else on Sunday and then always trying to balance this side of life makes it interesting.
Just eight minutes into practice there was an incident involving Kurt Busch, Matt Kenseth and Carl Edwards, among others, off of Turn 4. It proves that it may take a while to get used to the new Gen-6 cars in the draft, and indicating that the Sprint Unlimited could be a free-for-all.
“This race is going to be insane,” driver Carl Edwards said. “Guys are going to go out there and try everything they've been thinking about all winter. We're going to throw caution to the wind. There's no points, it's just going to be a brawl out there on the race track. It's gonna be crazy.”