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FEBRUARY 8, 2008

Villeneuve close to a deal

Jacques Villeneuve is reported to be close to signing up a major sponsor to support his entry into the NASCAR Sprint Cup in 2008. The plan is to run the Bill Davis Racing Toyota Camry unsponsored at the upcoming Daytona 500 on February 17. The programme for the big event begins this weekend with the Budweiser Shootout and qualifying for the 500. This will be followed by the Gatorade Duels, two 150-mile qualifying races on Thursday, which will be part of the process of establishing the starting order. Villeneuve will have to qualify on speed alone as he has no automatic entry but he is convinced this is not a problem. Villeneuve is reported to have hooked up with Barry Green, who ran him back in the early 1990s at Forsythe Racing. Green went on to establish Team Green and eventually sold out to Michael Andretti. In recent years Green has been keeping a low profile but it seems that he is now looking after Villeneuve's business affairs.