President Barack Obama will honor NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson and the 11 other Chase drivers from last year in a White House ceremony on Wednesday – but nearly half of the 2010 playoff contenders won’t be there.

NASCAR said Thursday that five drivers – Greg Biffle, Kurt Busch, Carl Edwards, Kevin Harvick and Tony Stewart – will not be attending the White House visit due to “schedule conflicts.”

You’d think whatever photo shoots or sponsor appearances these drivers have lined up on Wednesday afternoon – if that’s indeed the reason – could be rescheduled. After all, this is thePresident of the United States we’re talking about here.

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