Thursday, June 21, 2012

Road America Roster Contains New Names

As usual, Saturday’s NASCAR Nationwide Series race at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin will feature a number of names not usually seen on the series roster.

Villeneuve set for Road America
Jacques Villeneuve will drive for Penske Racing this weekend, and also at Montreal’s Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on August 18. The former World Driving Champion will wheel Penske’s #22 Discount Tire Dodge Challenger for the second-consecutive season. He finished third at both Road America and Montreal last season, matching his career best finish. He has been to Victory Lane at Road America in the past winning the CART Series events there in 1994 and 1995.

Ron Fellows is set to take the wheel of the JR Motorsports No. 5 Chevrolet in all three Nationwide Series road course events this season. Fellows is a former winner for the team, after emerging victorious in August of 2008 at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. He has four career Nationwide Series wins in all -- three of them coming at Watkins Glen – and finished second at Road America last year.  He will once again be paired with veteran crew chief Tony Eury Sr.
Turner Motorsports will field four Nationwide Series Chevrolets this weekend for series regular Justin Algaier, along with Open Wheel standout Brad Sweet and Brazilian drivers Nelson Piquet Jr. and Miguel Paludo.  Paludo, a two-time champion of the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge in his native Brasil, will make his first career NNS start in the No. 32 Chevrolet Impala.
Piquet will drive the No. 30 Chevrolet in his third career NNS start. The former Formula One star made his Nationwide debut at Watkins Glen in 2010, earning a seventh-place finish, his best NNS result to date.
Nelson Piquet, Jr.
Victor Gonzalez Jr. will make his debut for RAB Racing with Brack Maggard this weekend, driving the Delta Commercial/IMCA Toyota Camry. The race marks his second career start at Road America, and his sixth Nationwide Series race.
Alex Kennedy will team with NEMCO Motorsports and Sacred Power Motorsports for the Sargento 200 at Road America this weekend. He made his NASCAR Nationwide Series debut at Road America in 2010 and posted the 15th fastest time in his first Nationwide Series qualifying effort. His career best finish of 16th came later that year at Watkins Glen.
And finally, Grand Am Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge Series regular Matt Bell makes his Nationwide debut this weekend in the #4 Extreme Bidder Chevrolet fielded by  JD Motorsports with Gary Keller. Bell won last year's companion event at Road America driving a Chevrolet Camaro, and will do double duty Saturday, running both the Continental Tire and NASCAR Nationwide Series races.
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