Talladega II: Dale Earnhardt Inc. qualifying report

Dale Earnhardt Inc. Posts Strong Qualifying Effort at Talladega; DEI places four cars in top 10 of starting lineup for Sunday's Amp Energy 500 TALLADEGA, Ala. (Oct. 4, 2008) -- Dale Earnhardt Inc. turned in its most impressive qualifying effort...

Dale Earnhardt Inc. Posts Strong Qualifying Effort at Talladega; DEI places four cars in top 10 of starting lineup for Sunday's Amp Energy 500

TALLADEGA, Ala. (Oct. 4, 2008) -- Dale Earnhardt Inc. turned in its most impressive qualifying effort of the season on Saturday morning at Talladega Superspeedway, placing all four of its Sprint Cup entries inside the top 10 of the starting lineup for Sunday's Amp Energy 500.

Rookie Aric Almirola led the way for Dale Earnhardt Inc., qualifying on the inside of the second row in third position. Almirola was joined inside the top five by DEI teammates Regan Smith (fourth) and Paul Menard (fifth). Martin Truex Jr. (10th) rounded out the strong qualifying performance.

In addition, the vaunted Earnhardt Childress Racing Technologies engine program occupied five of the top-10 starting positions in Saturday's qualifying session, with the Childress No. 33 entry of Mike Wallace joining Dale Earnhardt Inc.'s four cars inside the top 10 in sixth position.

"This is a track where a lot of qualifying is based on the car," said Almirola. "And the No. 8 team gave me a great car today for qualifying. We had a really strong day as a company at Dale Earnhardt Inc. and the ECR engine program was outstanding here today. The car runs really well in the draft and we liked what we saw in practice yesterday. The team is pretty excited about seeing what we can do in tomorrow's race."

"It's good for the whole company," added Smith, who was the top Raybestos Rookie qualifier. "We've got all four cars inside the top 10, and I'm proud of everybody at ECR Engines and everybody back at the shop that works for DEI. We have a lot of stuff going on this weekend and it just shows how strong the company really is when we come out here and make all the cars this fast. We've been getting better each week whether it's a short track or an intermediate track or a superspeedway program. Now, we'll just see what we can do Sunday."

"It was a good lap for us," said Menard. "I just wish we could have had a DEI car on top of the board, but all four in the top-10 is awesome. For me, I have the easy part, so it was just a great effort by Doug Randolph, the entire No. 15 team and all the guys back at the shop. I think you will see us all run really well tomorrow, as well. I know Aric, Martin, Regan and I were all very happy with the car in the draft so the name of the game is just going to be staying out of trouble."

"I've never had a car here with this much horsepower," added Martin Truex Jr. "We have a lot of power under the hood and the guys on the No. 1 Bass Pro Shops Team have given me a really good car for tomorrow's race. It should be a lot of fun once the green flag drops and it looks like we'll have a lot of DEI teammates to work with at the front of the pack."

-credit: dei

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Series Monster Energy NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Mike Wallace , Martin Truex Jr. , Paul Menard , Regan Smith , Aric Almirola