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Johnson, fellow Cup drivers hit dirt track tonight

ROSSBURG, Ohio (June 4, 2008)—Jimmie Johnson won’t have to worry about the hectic schedule that usually accompanies race day when he suits up for tonight’s Prelude to the Dream.

Tonight is all about bragging rights and raising money for a good cause.

This is the fourth-annual Prelude to the Dream dirt race, however it will be Johnson’s first time competing in the charity event at the Eldora Speedway in Rossburg, Ohio. Catch the race live on Pay-Per-View at 7 p.m., ET today.

The race raises money for Tony Stewart’s Victory Junction Camp. This means for the drivers, they can focus on simply racing and some might consider that more valuable than winning money.

Johnson, the two-time defending Sprint Cup champion, will be driving Clint Bowyer’s No. 48 car. This particular dirt late model has a history of winning—Shannon Babbs drove it to several victories, and Johnson is excited to get the opportunity to race in it.

“I’m not sure what he’s thinking,” Johnson said about Bowyer’s decision to let him use the car. “But he’s putting me in great equipment, and I’m really looking forward to getting out there and running some laps.”

Johnson hasn’t been on a dirt track since 2001 when he hot lapped and qualified a late-model series car at Texas Motor Speedway.

“I have a dirt background, but in a much different vehicle,” Johnson said, “I’m looking forward to being with everyone and spending some time on the dirt and helping Tony (Stewart) raise some money for the (Victory Junction Gang) Camp.”