ERIK DARNELL PREPARES FOR SIXTH CAREER CUP START

Erik Darnell, driver of the No. 96 Valvoline Ford Fusion, will make the sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup Series of his career on Sunday at Phoenix International Raceway. It will be Darnell’s first career Cup start at PIR; he has two top-10 finishes in three career Nationwide Truck Series starts at the one-mile track. Darnell was 24th fastest during Saturday’s lone practice – weather cancelled the other one, and he says, as a young driver, he would’ve liked the extra track time.

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