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Lee Pulliam smashes track record in Martinsville 300 practice

The four-time NASCAR national champion established himself as the favorite to take the clock

Martinsville Speedway

Had practice counted for qualifying, Lee Pulliam would have set a track record on Friday afternoon at Martinsville Speedway.

The four-time NASCAR Whelen All-American Series national champion posted a sub 20 second lap, eliciting surprise and shock from many within the paddock, while also establishing himself as the favorite to win a third grandfather clock on Saturday night.

He lap of 19.984 knocked Layne Riggs off the top of the charts.

“Last week, we were okay, but we needed to be better,” Pulliam said. “So, my guys went to work and we made all our team’s cars better. We didn’t unload quite as good as I wanted to but we made it better and better. It’s not perfect but I do think we’re good enough to get in the top-20 and that’s the main goal.”

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Pulliam wants to be in the top-20 because that’s how many will automatically be taken from time trials into the 40-car main event. The rest will be entered into a pair of heat races in which the top-10 will advance into the main event.

“I think it’s going to take a little bit more than what we have to set it on the pole,” Pulliam said.

Peyton Sellers was third quick with Josh Berry and Dustin Rumley completing the top-five.

“The conditions were a little bit different from last week,” Berry said. “We were off a little bit from the start of the practice. We made good adjustments during that midway mock run. Lee just laid down a hell of a lap. We just need to be a tick better but I think we’re right there especially after a couple of laps.

“We’ll see what we have here tonight because it’s hard to tell with this format and the draw.”

Qualifying will take place around 8:15 ET time with the qualifying order based on practice times in reverse order of slowest to fastest in this final practice session.

  1. Lee Pulliam – 19.984
  2. Layne Riggs – 20.029
  3. Peyton Sellers – 20.042
  4. Josh Berry – 20.095
  5. Dustin Rumley – 20.127
  6. Bobby McCarty – 20.133
  7. Trey Crews – 20.149
  8. Craig Moore – 20.155
  9. Sammy Smith – 20.158
  10. Tommy Lemons, Jr. – 20.170
  11. Kres VanDyke – 20.185
  12. Jake Crum – 20.200
  13. Timothy Peters – 20.208
  14. Bubba Pollard – 20.221
  15. Trevor Noles – 20.224
  16. Travis Swaim – 20.226
  17. Taylor Gray – 20.228
  18. Brenden Queen – 20.235
  19. Mike Looney – 20.236
  20. Jason York – 20.243
  21. Dexter Caipe, Jr. – 20.246
  22. Trevor Ward – 20.256
  23. Justin Carroll – 20.260
  24. Ryan Wilson – 20.273
  25. Brandon Pierce – 20.273
  26. E. Falk, III – 20.280
  27. Jamey Caudill – 20.292
  28. Brennan Poole – 20.317
  29. Chad McCumbee – 20.324
  30. Jeff Oakley – 20.327
  31. Jonathan Findley – 20.328
  32. Colin Garrett – 20.337
  33. Brandon Clements – 20.341
  34. Matt Leicht – 20.344
  35. Zack Clifton – 20.351
  36. Kyle Dudley – 20.365
  37. Jacob Heafner – 20.386
  38. Bruce Anderson – 20.386
  39. Stacy Puryear – 20.400
  40. Justin Hicks – 20.403
  41. Camden Gullie – 20.404
  42. Mike Darne – 20.406
  43. Nik Williams – 20.410
  44. Kevin Leicht – 20.430
  45. ChaseDixon – 20.481
  46. Davin Scites – 20.486
  47. Annabeth Barnes Crum – 20.409
  48. Tyler Matthews – 20.503
  49. Derrick Lancaster – 20.519
  50. Jason Barnes – 20.522
  51. Ryan Millington – 20.527
  52. Lucas Williams – 20.528
  53. Austin Thaxton – 20.560
  54. Steve Zacharias – 20.566
  55. J. Mackey – 20.571
  56. Grayson Cullather – 20.575
  57. R. Waldrop – 20.582
  58. Jimmy Wallace – 20.606
  59. Matt Waltz – 20.663
  60. Kyle Southern – 20.681
  61. Dylan Ward – 20.746
  62. Eric Winslow – 20.803
  63. Owen Smith – 20.816
  64. James Sweeny – 20.827
  65. Amber Lynn – 20.930
  66. Bobby Gillespie – 20.968
  67. Daryn Cockram – 21.288
  68. Mack Tatum – 21.583

Matt Weaver is the owner and founder of Short Track Scene. Weaver grew up in the sport, having raced himself before becoming a reporter in college at the University of South Alabama. He is also the associate motorsports editor of Autoweek Magazine and its website, which allows him to cover the highest levels of the sport.

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