Testing to impress

Danica Patrick and Kurt Busch lead the pack during Friday's test session at
Daytona International Speedway. Credit: Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR

The 3-day test session at Daytona International Speedway holds no merit whatsoever in which driver will grab the checkered flag in 43 days. What it does show is who is testing to impress. Drivers and teams come to a test session with their A-game on and want to show how hard they have been working in the off-season.

The test session of 2012 just wrapped up day number two and there are some names that have impressed me. At the top of the board today was Kurt Busch, whom many discarded to the junk pile for 2012 after leaving Penske Racing for Phoenix Racing. I think we were all wrong in that presumption and 2012 maybe a surprise for Phoenix Racing.

Danica Patrick was once again driving to impress the boys! With not even a full-season in the Nationwide Series, Patrick was 13th fastest in both of today’s sessions. The “honey badger” attitude seems to be working for Patrick as she attempts to make her way into her first ever Daytona 500.

Silly season produced some great moves, but none better then AJ Allmendinger to Penske. Allmendinger and teammate Brad Keselowski partnered together during practice to finish 12th for the day. Allmendinger is definitely with the right team to be a contender in 2012 and is a driver to watch as he looks to claim his first win.

Aric Almirola was quite impressive in his first laps in a Sprint Cup car this time around. Almirola climbs into the No. 43 car looking to get “the King” back into victory lane and if testing is any indication, Almirola and teammate Marcos Ambrose work well together.

With one more day remaining, teams have one more chance to make tweaks before they return to the track for the Budweiser Shootout. 
Testing to impress Testing to impress Reviewed by Unknown on Friday, January 13, 2012 Rating: 5