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Casey Mears Set to Make All-Star Challenge Debut

CONCORD, N.C. (May 19, 2007) - Casey Mears, driver of the No. 25 National Guard/GMAC Chevrolet, will compete in his first NASCAR NEXTEL All-Star Challenge this weekend at Lowe’s Motor Speedway.

Mears’ No. 25 Hendrick Motorsports team secured its spot in the event after earning a victory a Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway in 2006.

“Obviously, I’m in a different position this year because in the past I’ve had to compete in the qualifying event and always wanted to make it in,” said Mears, who will roll off from the eighth row after qualifying 16th-fastest on Friday evening. “So, it’s nice to inherit the spot, and I owe the 25 team for that.

“I’m so excited for this race—I have been for awhile now—and we’ll be looking to make the most of this opportunity.”

Crew chief Darian Grubb selected Hendrick Motorsports Chassis No. 384 for this weekend’s event. The car saw race action earlier this season at California Speedway, but has a new motor—the Chevrolet R07—under its hood for the All-Star Challenge.

In April, Mears became the first Hendrick Motorsports driver to race the new motor in 2007 NEXTEL Cup Series competition when he finished 23rd at Texas Motor Speedway.

The cars of Hendrick Motorsports teammates Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson and Kyle Busch also will utilize the R07, which is Chevrolets first complete engine redesign since 1955.

“It’s a strong motor, and it performed well for our No. 25 National Guard/GMAC Chevrolet team in Texas,” Mears said. “We were very pleased with its power.”

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