DALE EARNHARDT JR. LOOKING FOR TWO STRAIGHT AT RICHMOND INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY Richmond, VA (April 26, 2007)--Dale Earnhardt Jr. brought tens of thousands of fans to their feet at Richmond International Raceway last year when he took the lead...
DALE EARNHARDT JR. LOOKING FOR TWO STRAIGHT AT RICHMOND INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY
Richmond, VA (April 26, 2007)--Dale Earnhardt Jr. brought tens of thousands of fans to their feet at Richmond International Raceway last year when he took the lead on Lap 356 of the Crown Royal 400 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race. Earnhardt Jr. went on to lead the remainder of the event and following his thrilling finish to the checkered flag, Earnhardt Jr.'s #8 Budweiser Chevrolet disappeared into a cloud of smoke caused by one of the best burnouts of recent memory. It was Earnhardt Jr.'s third NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series win at America's Premier Short Track.
Fans who witnessed last year's race in person will remember that Earnhardt Jr.--arguably NASCAR's most popular driver--had a classic battle with his buddy and Chesterfield, Virginia native Denny Hamlin, who was looking to claim a victory at his hometown track. Kevin Harvick appeared to have the dominant car throughout the race, leading 272 of 400 laps, but Harvick relinquished the lead after his pit strategy backfired.
"It was fun. We had a good car," said Earnhardt Jr. "The No. 29 (of Kevin Harvick) was fast all night, and they had some troubles, some bad pit strategy or whatever, made some mistakes, not pitting when they should have. That seems to be what the short track race is all about. All the cars are so easily matched that are running toward the front, so it's more about pit strategy and who can get out first on that last stop and try to maintain position."
Earnhardt Jr. likes giving the fans their money's worth with his spectacular burnouts.
"People have come to expect burnouts, so you don't want to disappoint the fans," said Earnhardt Jr. "It's a lot of fun. When you win, you're pretty excited and it's a great feeling. It's one I'd like to experience a whole lot more often."
Although Earnhardt Jr. is tied with Tony Stewart for most NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series wins at Richmond International Raceway by an active driver (three), the burnout is something Earnhardt Jr. has not experienced in the series since last year's Crown Royal 400.
Earnhardt Jr.'s next mission at Richmond International Raceway will be to win the Crown Royal Presents The Jim Stewart 400 on Saturday, May 5 "under the lights." Tickets are available now, so don't miss your chance to witness another thrilling finish!
The Crown Royal Presents The Jim Stewart 400 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race will feature the Car of Tomorrow for the first time at Richmond International Raceway. Drivers endured two days of testing earlier this month in preparation for the race, and many agree that the racing will remain excellent at America's Premier Short Track.
I think the racing will be good," said Earnhardt Jr. "A lot of guys are running in the middle, moving the grooves up, so that's a good sign. It's a great race track; a lot of grooves to race in the corner makes for great side-by-side racing. It's a great challenge for the drivers. I think a lot of drivers really enjoy it and absolutely it's one of the best tracks on the circuit."
Your chance to see if Dale Earnhardt Jr. can take the checkered flag at Richmond International Raceway for the second consecutive year is coming on Saturday, May 5 at Richmond International Raceway. Did you know tickets are still available for the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race? A limited amount of tickets are on sale now by calling 1-866-455-7223 or visiting www.rir.com. And don't forget about the NASCAR Busch Series Circuit City 250 Presented by FUNAI on Friday, May 4. Tickets are available for both nights. For more information, please call the ticket office at 1-866-455-7223 or visit www.rir.com.