Originally written on Fox Sports Florida  |  Last updated 9/21/14
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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- Quiet most of Speedweeks, Dale Earnhardt Jr. made a little noise Saturday. Earnhardt topped the speed chart for the final practice session before Sunday's season-opening Daytona 500. The 2004 Daytona 500 champion turned the fast lap by averaging 198.592 mph around the 2 -mile superspeedway. David Gilliland was second, followed by Clint Bowyer, Marcos Ambrose and Aric Almirola. Pole-sitter Danica Patrick and Stewart-Haas Racing teammate Tony Stewart were among 10 drivers who skipped the 1 -hour final tuneup. Patrick is trying to become the first driver win the Daytona 500 from the pole since Dale Jarrett in 2000. Only nine drivers have accomplished the feat in 54 years. Three-time Daytona 500 winner Jeff Gordon, 2010 Daytona 500 champ Jamie McMurray, Casey Mears, Terry Labonte and Joe Nemechek also sat out the session. So did Joe Gibbs Racing teammates Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Matt Kenseth. "We don't have any plans to go out," Gordon said. "We fee...
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