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Round 5: The Danica Patrick Experiment: The Dollar General 300 Nationwide Preview

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It's Chicagoland this weekend, the second straight under the lights racing for both the Cup and Nationwide guys.  It's also the 5th race for Danica Patrick in the Nationwide Series. 

Patrick is coming off her best finish ever of 30th.  Yup, that's a three and then a zero.  She has completed just 495 laps of a possible 672.  That's 73.7%. 

Because I'm mean like that, Landon Cassill (who drove the 7 car in just 3 events) has completed 88.8% AND finished 18th and 20th.  Neither have led any laps. 

Patrick is listed as being from Roscoe, Ill. so this is her home state.  Justin Allgaier is also returning to his home state. 

Voting is underway for the Most Popular Driver in all three divisions. 

Brad Keselowski is the defending and two time champion.  I wonder if he will win it again this year? 

Honestly though it wouldn't surprise me to see Danica Patrick win it, despite being a part time driver.  It would cause a huge uproar. 

Joey Logano is the defending champion of this race, and he's back to win another.  He'll be in the Lego Harry Potter Toyota.

Entry List, and more after the JUMP!

Ent. Car # Driver Sponsor Manu. Owner
1 1 Ryan Newman Phoenix Construction 10 Chevrolet James Finch
2 01 Mike Wallace 10 Chevrolet Lori Davis
3 04 Jeremy Clements 10 Chevrolet Gene Vess
4 05 Willie Allen 31-W Insulation 10 Chevrolet Wayne Day
5 6 Ricky Stenhouse Jr Citifinancial 10 Ford Jack Roush
6 7 Danica Patrick 10 Chevrolet Bryan Mullet
7 09 10 Ford Robby Benton
8 10 David Reutimann Beringer Vineyards 08 Toyota Todd Braun
9 11 Brian Scott 10 Toyota Harry Scott Jr
10 12 Justin Allgaier Verizon Wireless 10 Dodge Roger Penske
11 13 Jennifer Jo Cobb Driver Boutique 10 Chevrolet Jennifer Jo Cobb
12 15 Michael Annett Pilot Travel Centers 10 Toyota Bob Germain
13 16 Colin Braun CONWAY 10 Ford Jack Roush
14 18 Kyle Busch Z-Line 10 Toyota Joe Gibbs
15 20 Joey Logano GameStop 10 Toyota Joe Gibbs
16 21 Morgan Shepherd Racing With Jesus 10 Chevrolet Richard Childress
17 22 Brad Keselowski Discount Tire 10 Dodge Jodi Geschickter
18 23 Robert Richardson Jr 09 Chevrolet Robert Richardson
19 24 Eric McClure Hefty Odor Block 10 Ford Ed Rensi
20 26 Brian Keselowski 10 Dodge Bob Keselowski
21 27 Justin Lofton 10 Ford Mike Curb
22 28 Kenny Wallace Anderson's Maple Syrup 10 Chevrolet Jay Robinson
23 32 Reed Sorenson Dollar General Stores 08 Toyota Todd Braun
24 33 Kevin Harvick Jimmy John's 10 Chevrolet Delana Harvick
25 34 Tony Raines 10 Chevrolet Bob Jenkins
26 35 Jason Keller 10 Chevrolet Mark Smith
27 36 Kevin Hamlin 10 Chevrolet Mark Smith
28 37 Josh Wise 10 Ford Gary Baker
29 38 Jason Leffler Great Clips 08 Toyota Ralph Braun
30 40 Mike Bliss 10 Chevrolet Curtis Key Sr
31 42 Parker Kligerman 10 Dodge Eddie Smith
32 43 Brad Baker 10 Ford Mike Curb
33 49 Mark Green 10 Chevrolet Jay Robinson
34 56 Kevin Lepage 10 Toyota John McNelly
35 60 Carl Edwards FASTENAL 10 Ford Jack Roush
61 Withdrew
36 62 Brendan Gaughan South Point 09 Toyota Rusty Wallace
37 66 Steve Wallace 5 Hour Energy 09 Toyota Rusty Wallace
38 70 Shelby Howard Foretravel 10 Chevrolet Mary Louise Miller
73 Withdrew
39 81 Michael McDowell 10 Dodge Pat MacDonald
40 87 Joe Nemechek 09 Chevrolet Andrea Nemechek
41 88 Jamie McMurray Suave for Men 10 Chevrolet Dale Earnhardt Jr
42 89 Johnny Chapman Victory in Jesus Racing 10 Chevrolet Cindy Shepherd
43 90 Danny O'Quinn Jr   09 Chevrolet Eddie D'hondt
44 91 David Gilliland 09 Chevrolet Randy Humphrey
45 92 Dennis Setzer 10 Dodge Brian Keselowski
46 98 Paul Menard RICHMOND/MENARDS 10 Ford Jack Roush
47 99 Trevor Bayne Aaron's Dream Machine 10 Toyota Michael Waltrip

So, If you read through entry lists, you may notice something a bit strange. Morgan Shepherd will drive the Richard Childress #21 and Johnny Chapman will be in the #89. The #21 will actually be a Morgan Shepherd car, but he is running the #21 to keep them locked into the field since this is a race they didn't have sponsorship for. So, This week Morgan Shepherd will be driving in a brand new 2010 Chevy, AND Johnny Chapman will be driving in a brand new 2010 Chevy.  The owner points that Morgan recieves will go to Childress.

I think we are seeing the slow death of Baker Curb Racing.  They have begun to run a #37 Ford, starting and parking, so they can finance the #27 ford.  The #43, that was driven by Scott Lagasse, has also been starting and parking as of late and is about to drop outside the top 30.  Unless sponsorship can be found, Baker Curb may close. 

Ryan Newman is back this week.  I stated last week that if James Finch had continued to run the #1 car, even starting and parking, that team would still be inside the top 30.

No driver has been named for the #09 Ford, or for Derrike Cope's #73 Dodge.  Normally if Cope isn't driving he has Chapman in the car, but if Chapman is indeed in the 89, Cope would need to find another driver. 

The #42 team is back.  Rumor was they had closed down.  Parker Kligerman has been having to start and park the #42 Dodge, and I don't think that really helps his rookie development.

Jennifer Jo Cobb is entered again, this time in her own car. 

So, Tune in Friday Night at 730 eastern ESPN, for the Dollar General 300 from Chicagoland!  Enjoy!