DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Nov. 1, 2007) ? NASCAR announced Duane Howard as the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Pennsylvania champion.

Howard had 5 wins, 13 top fives and 15 top 10s in 18 starts, racing primarily at Grandview Speedway. He earned $6, 000 for the Pennsylvania championship.

Just 28 drivers out of the thousands of participants in NASCAR?s grassroots, local-racing program ? which encompasses tracks throughout the United States and Canada ? earned a similar honor.

The crowning of champions on the state level renews a tradition of honoring the best short-track racers in each state, which dates back to the earliest days of NASCAR.

The NASCAR Pennsylvania champion was determined by the driver?s highest 18 finishes at NASCAR sanctioned tracks within the state.

This was also the first year of a long-term sponsorship for Whelen Engineering as the title sponsor of NASCAR?s weekly racing program. The Connecticut-based company is a leading manufacturer of automotive, aviation, industrial and public emergency lighting and warning systems.

Since its inception, NASCAR?s local racing series has served as a springboard in the careers of many top drivers. NASCAR stars Greg Biffle, Clint Bowyer, Jeff Burton, Kurt and Kyle Busch, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Carl Edwards, Denny Hamlin, Kevin Harvick, Bobby Labonte, Jamie McMurray, Elliott Sadler and Brian Vickers all began their careers racing their local short tracks.

The NASCAR Whelen All-American Serie