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Fan’s Perspective: Todd Bodine Makes Milestone NASCAR Start at Chicagoland

Yahoo Contributor Network

He's the youngest of the three racing Bodine brothers from Chemung, New York, but this weekend at the Camping World Truck Series American Ethanol 225 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois, Todd Bodine will do something that his brothers Geoff and Brett haven't done - or anyone else in NASCAR for that matter: make 200 or more starts in all three of NASCAR's national touring series.

Bodine, known as "the Onion" to fans, has been racing in NASCAR's upper echelons regularly since 1990, but he made his debut in 1986 in the Busch Series (now Nationwide) at Martinsville. Bodine ran numerous part-time seasons in the Busch and Cup Series, having scored 15 wins in the Busch Series between 1991 and 2003, but missing victory lane in the Cup Series. Bodine has 241 Cup Series starts and 321 Nationwide Series starts to date.

He's best known, however, for his successes in the Truck Series. Bodine competed in five races for Roush Racing in the series in 1995, but wouldn't return to the series until 2004. His statistics in the series are impressive, beginning with the two championships he won in 2006 and 2010. In his previous 199 starts, Bodine has 22 wins, 90 top-five finishes and 121 top-10 finishes. His most recent win came in June of this year at Dover International Speedway, a race that played on both pit strategy and Mother Nature, as Bodine was out front when the race was called due to rain.

As a full-time driver in the Truck Series, Bodine has never finished lower than sixth in points, but currently sits in 13th through nine races this season as the driver of the #11 Toyota Tundra for Red Horse Racing. Bodine's career since winning the 2010 title has been a series of ups and downs, starting with losing the sponsor on his championship-winning ride for the 2011 season; sponsorship woes for Germain Racing led to a 10-race deal with Randy Moss Motorsports to complete the season, followed by Germain Racing closing the doors to its Truck Series shops. For 2012, Bodine is teamed with Truck Series' points leader Timothy Peters, who became the eighth winner in nine races this season; a third team, with driver John King, won the first race of the season at Daytona, but was closed down due to a lack of sponsorship.

Paula is a long-time NASCAR fan who also covers the sport at Skirts & Scuffs and Examiner.com.

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