Updated: April 4, 2014, 8:39 PM ET

Turn 4 TV

Ryan McGee and Marty Smith discuss how the new Chase format is affecting races in the regular season, as seen by Kurt Busch and Jimmie Johnson's duel at Martinsville.

Johnson leads practice Friday

By K. Lee Davis | ESPN.com

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FORT WORTH, Texas -- Jimmie Johnson led the first Sprint Cup practice at Texas Motor Speedway, the only one held on Friday. He won the race here last November.

Johnson posted a speed of 193.237 mph, easily outclassing Greg Biffle, who put together a run at 192.055 mph for second place.

Ryan Newman, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Brian Vickers, Jamie McMurray, Kurt Busch, Trevor Bayne, Paul Menard and Marcos Ambrose rounded out the top 10.

Big time in the Lone Star State

By K. Lee Davis | ESPN.com

It's a big weekend in North Texas, or more accurately Fort Worth and Arlington.

The NCAA men's basketball Final Four tips off Saturday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington -- aka "Jerry World" -- and Sunday, Texas Motor Speedway plays host to the Sprint Cup Series Duck Commander 500 in far north Fort Worth.

They say everything is bigger in Texas, and I would add even the egos behind the local sports facilities.

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The Cowboys' still relatively new stadium could swallow most others in the country, and it has a video board that was the envy of the world when it debuted in 2009.

Not to be outdone, TMS president Eddie Gossage just oversaw the installation of an HDTV array you could probably watch from space. How big is "Big Hoss"? Try 9,000 square feet bigger than the one at the nearby football (and any other sport they can get in it) stadium. Total square footage of the TV at the track? 20,633. Representatives from the Guinness Book of World Records will be on hand Sunday to certify it as the largest HD screen in the world.

"The saying is, 'Everything is bigger in Texas,' but we're going to have to change that to 'biggest,'" Gossage said. "The Guinness Book of World Records is an institution, and they have deemed 'Big Hoss TV' to be the biggest in the world without any qualifiers. It is the ultimate fan amenity. Our fans deserve the best and there isn't a stadium or an arena anywhere in the world that can top this screen."

To Cowboys owner Jerry Jones' credit, he's yet to take the bait Gossage has set out for him. Or maybe he's just thinking of another Texas phrase, "All hat and no cattle," and is resigned to knowing he can't fit a TV in his playground that rivals "Big Hoss."

What's more important overall is more than 100,000 fans will pack into AT&T Stadium on Saturday, and then again Monday for the final. Well more than 100,000 fans will be at TMS on Sunday to watch the race -- weather permitting.

And that's no bull.

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At the track

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Weather worries

By K. Lee Davis | ESPN.com

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Texas Motor Speedway has a unique schedule this weekend with the Final Four in town also drawing sports fans.

Sprint Cup Series qualifying for the Duck Commander 500 falls on Saturday afternoon instead of the usual Friday, and the Nationwide Series O'Reilly Auto Parts 300 rolls off Friday night instead of the typical Saturday afternoon.

None of that appears to be in jeopardy from inclement weather -- which popped up Thursday evening -- but Sunday's main event may have issues. The National Weather Service is forecasting a 60 percent chance of rain Sunday.

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