OXFORD – Brad Keselowski, a driver in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series, announced his plans Monday to compete in the TD Bank 250 at Oxford Plains Speedway on July 18.

“Brad is a rising star in the Sprint Cup Series and we are ecstatic to have him participate in the TD Bank 250,” OPS owner Bill Ryan Jr. said in a statement. “We are extremely excited to have a driver as talented and popular as Brad come and see what he can do against the toughest competition in New England.

Keselowski, who drives for Penske Motorsports, said he’s looking forward to running the TD Bank 250.

“Throughout the racing world, the TD Bank 250 is well known as one of the premier short track events,” said Keselowski in a statement. “I am looking forward to see if I can come up and pull off a win like Kevin Harvick did in 2008.”

The TD Bank 250 is held on an off week for the Sprint Cup Series.

“I’ve had some feelers, but I’m not sure whether another Sprint Cup driver will enter the race,” Ryan said.

Since 2004, several of NASCAR’s top drivers have competed in the TD Bank 250. The group includes Matt Kenseth, Kyle and Kurt Busch, Denny Hamlin, Terry Labonte, Kenny and Steve Wallace and Harvick.

Keselowski, 26, also runs a full schedule in the Nationwide Series and leads the point standings. He’s scheduled to race the night before the TD Bank 250 in a Nationwide event at Gateway International Speedway in Madison, Ill., just outside St. Louis.

Keselowski will drive a Late Model Sportsman car provided by Vermont-based car owner Kendall Roberts. He is expected to test the car at OPS later this month.

After establishing himself as one of NASCAR’s rising stars with his success in both the Nationwide Series and Camping World Truck Series, Keselowski joined Penske Racing last September.

He earned his first Sprint Cup victory in April 2009 in the Aaron’s 499 at Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama. He doesn’t have a top-10 finish this year, though, and ranks 24th in the series standings.

Fans chose Keselowski as the most popular driver in the Nationwide Series in 2008 and 2009.

The TD Bank 250 is the main event of a weekend that includes a full card of racing on Saturday night, featuring the New England Modified series.

 

Staff Writer Paul Betit can be contacted at 791-6424 or at: [email protected]