Michigan II: Martin - Friday media visist

Mark Martin, No. 01 U.S. Army Monte Carlo SS, met with members of the media and discussed his '57 Chevy paint scheme, on the No. 8 staying with DEI and car numbers in general, racing on the new surface at Bristol, on the unwritten rules in racing...

Mark Martin, No. 01 U.S. Army Monte Carlo SS, met with members of the media and discussed his '57 Chevy paint scheme, on the No. 8 staying with DEI and car numbers in general, racing on the new surface at Bristol, on the unwritten rules in racing and on racing opportunities for kids.

Select quotes from driver interview:

WHAT DOES THE SPECIAL '57 CHEVY PAINT SCHEME MEAN TO YOU? "I'm from that era, kind of. The '57 Chevy was still a very, very cool car when I was young and it was the race car of choice when I started - the '55, '56 and '57 Chevys make great race cars. We raced them on dirt and that's where I got started."

YOU ACTUALLY RACED THEM? "Oh yeah. I raced two years in them. They had a great frame to make a race car out of. Where I came from in Arkansas, they were even used in late models. They would put late-model bodies on '57 frames. It made a really nice race car. So the '57 Chevy really is not totally foreign to me."

DO YOU THINK THAT THE NO. 8 STAYING AT DEI WILL AFFECT DALE EARNHARDT, JR.'S FANS? "It should matter to a lot of Dale Earnhardt fans that the number stays with the owners, just as the No. 6 did with Roush. In this business the standard has always been that the number stays with the owner and the driver has his superstardom to carry wherever he may. It's a touchy situation that I don't care a whole lot to be in the middle of. Four weeks ago I didn't have a dream that I would ever even be working at Dale Earnhardt, Inc. And now, with the tremendous respect that I have with Dale Earnhardt and every member of his family, I have to be careful with that. All I know is that standard procedure for the owners to build equity in the number, that's what stays with them. The drivers take their superstardom wherever they may. When you make that choice to go. Dale Earnhardt won the rookie of the year and his first championship in the No. 2, then raced the No. 15 and then he raced the No. 8 on Dale Earnhardt, Inc. cars all through the '80s. If you do the history instead o f look at the last five or seven years, if you do the history and present it, then there's a whole different thing to it besides race fans. Dale Jr. made a choice to make a change in his career, to change his path and to give it a new start and to go put himself in a position to go win his first championship and I think that's great. But that also came with the chance that the number would stay with Dale Earnhardt, Inc. where it has been since 1984."

-credit: gm racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Sprint Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Mark Martin