Mccumbee Making Debut

This weekend, Chad McCumbee and the No. 45 Goody's Cool Orange Dodge team will head to the 2.5 mile, triangular-shaped Pocono Raceway for Sunday's Pocono 500.

This will be McCumbee's debut in the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series. The 23-year-old has been competing full-time in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series (NCTS) this season. He is currently 14th in the NCTS points standings.

"People have asked me what it means to get behind the wheel of a Petty Enterprises Dodge. That is really something I can't put into words," McCumbee said. "I mean, 268 wins, that is impressive. And, to step in for a legend like Kyle is an honor in itself. He is someone that I have really looked up to, and someone I hope to be able to learn a lot from.

"Everyone at Petty Enterprises has been really supportive of me. I have all the confidence in the world that we can go up there and get a good finish. This team is on their way back to the top. I hope, in some small way, that I can help them get there."

While McCumbee has never before competed at Pocono in a NEXTEL Cup car, he does have considerable success at the track in ARCA RE/MAX Series competition. He has finishes of fourth, second and third in his last three starts at the track in that series. NEXTEL Cup rookies have taken the checkered flag in the last two Pocono 500 events and McCumbee will be looking to make that three in a row.

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