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Daytona drivers top 203 mph in tests on repaved track

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The recently repaved surface at Daytona International Speedway is fast. Really fast. Maybe too fast.

In the most significant test on the 21/2-mile superspeedway, cars topped 203 mph Friday during practice for tonight’s Budweiser Shootout.

Joey Logano turned the fast lap with an average speed of 203.087 mph in the second of two practice sessions. Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch also topped 203 mph. Several others were close behind. In all, 10 cars hit 200 mph, creating some concern at NASCAR’s most famous track.

Will the sport’s governing body allow those kind of speeds to last? Bill Elliott topped 210 mph during qualifying for the 1987 Daytona 500, and NASCAR responded by introducing horsepower-sapping restrictor plates the following year.

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