Chicagoland: John Wes Townley preview

Fast & Fun Facts: * John Wes Townley led his very first lap of NASCAR Nationwide Series competition on lap 13 of the Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona International Speedway last Friday night. * Lap 100 of the Dollar General 300...

Fast & Fun Facts:

* John Wes Townley led his very first lap of NASCAR Nationwide Series competition on lap 13 of the Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona International Speedway last Friday night.

* Lap 100 of the Dollar General 300 this weekend will officially mark the half-way segment of the 35 race schedule in the NASCAR Nationwide Series.

John Wes Townley at Chicagoland: Townley has one previous start at Chicagoland Speedway in the 2008 ARCA RE/MAX Series Chicagoland ARCA 200; starting 5th.

RAB Racing at Chicagoland: In just four starts at the 1.5-mile tri-oval, RAB Racing has one top-five finish (2nd, Justin Marks, 2007); an average starting position of 7.25 and an average finish of 27.75.

This Week's No. 09 Zaxby's Ford: Townley will pilot chassis No. 032 in this weekend's Dollar General 300 at Chicagoland Speedway. This is the same chassis that Townley steered to an 18th place finish at Nashville Superspeedway in April and was last seen at Nashville Superspeedway in June.

After 17: After 17 of the scheduled 35 events on the 2009 NASCAR Nationwide Series schedule, Townley has three top-20 and five top-25 finishes. The 19-year-old rookie has an average starting position of 25.57 an average finish of 29.64 and has completed 71.77% of all laps attempted (1943 out of 2707).

Last Time Around-Daytona: After a promising start to the weekend including a solid starting position, John Wes Townley and the Zaxby's Racing team lead their first lap of NNS competition on lap 13 but electrical problems on the No. 09 machine resulted in a 36th-place finish, 21 laps down to race winner Clint Bowyer in the Subway Jalapeno 250.

Points Check: Following the NNS event at Daytona Int'l Speedway John Wes Townley remains 29th in the 2009 driver point standings with 942 points. Owner, Jay Robinson remains 35th in the 2009 owner point standings with 1011 points; 322 markers outside the top-30 and therefore required to qualify in the field on time at Chicagoland Speedway.

Rookie Race: Townley remains 6th in the 2009 Raybestos Rookie of the Year standings with 86 points.

News from the ARCA RE/MAX Series Garage: RAB Racing announced today that Tom Hessert III will pilot the No. 09 Cherry Hill Classic Cars Ford Fusion for the remainder of the 2009 ARCA RE/MAX Series season. Hessert will be driving for the seasoned ARCA RE/MAX Series team RAB Racing with Brack Maggard, beginning at Iowa Speedway on July 11th.

"I am very excited about the opportunity to drive for RAB Racing," stated Hessert. "The reputation and dedication to excellence that this team has is something that I look forward to becoming a part of. Just spending some time at the shop over the last two weeks and watching the team prepare the cars that I'm going to drive makes me very confident before I even hit the track."

Hessert, a veteran of the USAR Racing Series, USAC Sprints and USAC Midgets completed his first full season of ARCA RE/MAX Series racing in 2008; finishing eighth in the overall driver point standings. The 23-year-old Cherry Hill, NJ native has competed in each of the first nine ARCA RE/MAX Series events of 2009 and currently sits ninth in the driver point standings with one top-5 and three top-10 finishes.

A Proven Champion: David Green, the 1994 NASCAR Nationwide Series Champion has been working with John Wes since Dover (May) as his driver coach and spotter. Green has worked with other rookie drivers such as Stephen Leicht and Landon Cassill.

Raybestos Rookie Class Appearance: John Wes Townley will take part in a go-kart race between Rusty Wallace and/or Dale Jarrett and other members of the 2009 Raybestos Rookie class on Wednesday, July 8th at 6:00 p.m. CT. The event will be held at the Addison, IL location of Chicago Indoor Racing.

We're Guessing He Signs His Name Fast Too: Townley will also take part in an autograph session scheduled from 9:00-10:00 p.m. CT in conjunction with Race Fan Rally on Wednesday night, July 8th. For more information on Race Fan Rally please visit www.

And The Voting Begins: You can log onto and vote for your favorite NASCAR Nationwide Series driver starting today. Only one vote per day but you are encouraged to vote throughout the remainder of the season. Results of the voting will be announced at the awards banquet at the end of the year.

Birthday Wishes: The No. 09 Zaxby's Racing team is celebrating four birthdays this week. V.P of Business Operations, Jacquelyn Briscoe will be celebrating her 29th birthday on Tuesday, July 7th. Tire specialist Mark Norman will celebrate his 45th birthday on Wednesday, July 8th. Mechanic and rear tire carrier, Brett Sumpter will celebrate his 24th birthday Friday, July 10th and crew chief Brad Parrott will celebrate his 42nd birthday on Monday, July 13th.

Quoting John Wes Townley:

Do you look at Chicagoland as a cookie-cutter race track or do you think it has its own personality?

"I think every track has its own personality and identity. When you think cookie cutter track you usually think of Chicago, Kansas or Las Vegas but all the mile-and-a-half tracks have their own characteristics. You may have the same set-ups but you don't drive them the same. For example Chicago has a bump in the middle of turns one and two."

"The good thing is I have experience qualifying at Chicago and with the entry list in the upwards of 50 cars, it will be very beneficial come Friday when we qualify."

-credit: rabr

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Drivers Dale Jarrett , Rusty Wallace , David Green , Justin Marks , Landon Cassill , Tom Hessert , Clint Bowyer , Brack Maggard , Stephen Leicht , John Wes Townley