Earnhardt Jr. out of Rockingham

The rain-delayed Dura Lube 400 will continue Monday morning after being postponed by rain Sunday, but it will not include Dale Earnhardt Jr. and the Budweiser team. Dale Jr. was hit from behind by Ron Hornaday in turn three on the first lap, ...

The rain-delayed Dura Lube 400 will continue Monday morning after being postponed by rain Sunday, but it will not include Dale Earnhardt Jr. and the Budweiser team. Dale Jr. was hit from behind by Ron Hornaday in turn three on the first lap, which sent the Bud car careening into the car of Kenny Wallace and then hard into the wall. The car was damaged beyond repair, but Dale Jr. was uninjured. After finishing second last week in the Daytona 500, Dale Jr. will be classified 43rd in this race.

It had been an extremely tough week for Dale Jr. and the entire Dale Earnhardt Inc. contingent after the tragic death of Dale Earnhardt last Sunday during the final lap of the Daytona 500.

Dale Jr's: "Somebody ran over me. The 4 car (Robby Gordon) slid in front of me and we all checked up. Then, somebody got into the back of me and we were in the wall. Tell everyone I'm alright, but I was really ready to race. Our qualifying spot (25th) did not show how good of a car we had. I was really ready to get out there and race. I guess we'll have to get 'em at Las Vegas next week."

Dale Earnhardt Jr's comments during a news conference Friday afternoon:

"First off, I want to thank all the fans and the entire NASCAR family and everybody involved, for the respect they've shown us for the past several days. It's been a difficult time for the family, and for the Dale Earnhardt Inc. family. They've treated us the best of their ability, and have done a real good job of giving us our space and allowing us to take a deep breath and to put everything in perspective. I really don't know what else to say. I might be able to take some other questions some other time. My main focus right now is to try to maintain what my father had in mind for Dale Earnhardt, Inc. to the best of my ability with the help of these two fellows next to me (Michael Waltrip and Steve Park), and the rest of the family at DEI, we're going to try our best to maintain and carry on with the racing program.

"I do want to say that any notion, or any idea or any blame placed upon anyone, whether it be Sterling Marlin or anybody else for that matter, it's ridiculous. It's pretty incredible some of the things that I've heard or been told about. But one of the things this teaches you about is how selfish you are about things like this. I mean, I miss my father and I've cried for him, but out of my own selfish pity is the reason for those emotions. And I'm just trying to maintain a good focus for the future and that he's in a place that we all want to be and that's really all I have to say."

-Budweiser Racing

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Michael Waltrip , Steve Park , Kenny Wallace , Sterling Marlin , Robby Gordon , Ron Hornaday Jr.