NASCAR: Sprint Cup star Clint Bowyer to sub for Townley in today’s Truck race

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NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver Clint Bowyer will suit up for Athenian Motorsports in today’s NASCAR Camping World Truck Series race at Pocono Raceway.

Bowyer, who runs for Michael Waltrip Racing at NASCAR’s top level, is replacing John Wes Townley in the No. 05 Zaxby’s Toyota Tundra for the Pocono Mountains 150 (1 p.m. ET., check local listings).

Townley is being held out of today’s race after hitting Pocono’s Turn 2 wall hard in yesterday morning’s ARCA qualifying session. The Georgia driver was transported to a local hospital but has since been released.

A release from Athenian says that Townley is in “good health” but as tweeted yesterday by his account, he’ll be sitting out of competition for the next seven days as a precaution. He hopes that he’ll be cleared to compete in next weekend’s ARCA race at Berlin Raceway in Michigan.

As for Bowyer, he’s now set to make his first Camping World Truck Series start since 2011. Overall, he has made 12 CWTS starts in his career, with three wins coming at Texas in 2006, Phoenix in 2010 and Kansas in 2011.

Qualifying for the Pocono Mountains 150 is scheduled for later this morning at 10:10 a.m. ET.

Rinus VeeKay to drive for Ed Carpenter Racing in 2020

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Ed Carpenter Racing has signed 2019 Indy Lights runner-up Rinus VeeKay to drive the full 2020 NTT IndyCar Series season, the team announced Wednesday.

VeeKay will drive the No. 21 Chevrolet previously occupied by Spencer Pigot.

“I’m so happy!” the 19-year-old driver from the Netherlands said in a press release. “It’s a dream come true and something we have worked extremely hard for over the last couple of years. To step up from USF2000 to the NTT IndyCar Series in three years is really special.”

In his maiden Indy Lights season this year, VeeKay collected six race victories and seven pole potions. VeeKay previously won the 2018 Indy Pro 2000 championship, and finished second in the 2017 USF2000 standings.

VeeKay’s success in the ladder series caught the attention of Carpenter, who gave VeeKay the opportunity to first test for the team at Portland International Raceway in August.

“I have been following Rinus’s path through the Road to Indy, especially the past two years,” Carpenter said. “It was clear to me that he deserves to be in an Indy car. After his first day in a car at Portland this past season, that feeling became even more apparent. His pace, feedback and demeanor inside the car was very impressive for such a young driver.”

As a driver, Carpenter will be VeeKay’s teammate during the five oval races in 2020, once again returning to the team’s No. 20 entry. An announcement on which driver will pilot the No. 20 on the road and street circuits will be made at a later time.

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