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Notebook: Keselowski displays mosaic on car

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CONCORD, N.C. -- They number in the thousands, according to the team and sponsor, but attempting to count the photos and get an accurate reading didn't seem necessary.

One thing is certain -- there are a lot of photographs.

Defending NASCAR Sprint Cup Series champion Brad Keselowski has a new paint scheme for this weekend's NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race at Charlotte Motor Speedway, a mosaic adorning the No. 2 Penske Racing Ford that features photos submitted by fans.

"It wasn't my idea, it was a team idea," Keselowski said May 16 at the track. "It kind of evolved out of some basic concepts that we have. ? I think what's important for both me and for (sponsor) Miller Lite, is to do things that are neat and fun and authentic and creative.

"I want it to be fun. I didn't want it to be kind of a blah sponsor message. Miller Lite appreciates that as well. So we try to do things that really just kind of embrace the best of all worlds. I think that's where the fan mosaic car is coming from."

? Diane Newman has seen her son win more than a dozen times in NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series, including the 2008 Daytona 500. Now she can say she's worked alongside him as well.

Diane and Ryan Newman will be featured in a new ad campaign for Quicken Loans, primary sponsor of the Stewart-Haas Racing No. 39 Chevrolet.

"He was very good for once," Diane Newman said of working with Ryan for the first time. "He didn't get on my case or tease me. We did alright."

"It's more a matter of dealing with her," Ryan said playfully. "All the things I had to put up with growing up.

"That's the first time I've done anything like this with her, which was interesting."

The radio and TV ads promote Quicken's "Bring It Home" sweepstakes, a promotion that will pay five people's mortgages for a month each time Ryan finishes fifth or better in a Sprint Cup race. Fans may enter the contest by visiting www.qlracing.com.

? Points leader Jimmie Johnson says there's room for improvement for his No. 48 Hendrick Motorsports team, and believes it's on the series' 1.5-mile tracks.

"We're still getting good finishes," the five-time Cup champion said Friday at Charlotte Motor Speedway, "but we don't have that magic right now."

The "magic" might be missing, but Johnson's finishes of sixth at Las Vegas and Texas, as well as third at Kansas, are impressive just the same and one of the main reasons he heads into the All-Star Race weekend with a 44-point lead on second-place Carl Edwards.

? With Scott Speed in Barcelona to compete in Global Rallycross at the X Games, Leavine Family Racing tabbed Michael McDowell to drive the team's No. 95 Ford in Saturday night's Sprint Showdown. McDowell was 15th in Friday's only practice session for Showdown participants.

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