Labbe selected as No. 15 NAPA Crew Chief

Mooresville, N.C. (September 4, 2001)--- Dale Earnhardt Incorporated (DEI) announced today Richard ("Slugger") Labbe has signed to become the new crew chief for the NASCAR Winston Cup No. 15 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevrolet with 2001 Daytona 500 winner...

Mooresville, N.C. (September 4, 2001)--- Dale Earnhardt Incorporated (DEI) announced today Richard ("Slugger") Labbe has signed to become the new crew chief for the NASCAR Winston Cup No. 15 NAPA AUTO PARTS Chevrolet with 2001 Daytona 500 winner Michael Waltrip. The position of crew chief has been vacant since Scott Eggleston's departure from DEI in May.

Waltrip and Labbe worked together previously while Waltrip drove for Ultra Motorsports. Labbe will take over the position this weekend at Richmond International Raceway (Richmond, Va.).

"Slugger has been trained in winning environments," said Waltrip, "so the transition to Dale Earnhardt Incorporated shouldn't offer him any surprises. When we were together at Ultra Motorsports, I was impressed with Slugger's commitment to the sport and his desire to make every part of the car better."

Labbe joins the NAPA Auto Parts Chevrolet team after resigning from his recent tenure as the car chief for the No. 88 Robert Yates Racing (RYR) Ford driven by Dale Jarrett. Aside from his accomplishments with the No. 88 team, Labbe won Winston Cup Rookie of the Year honors with Kenny Irwin and the No. 28 RYR team in 1998. He also worked with the No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports team in 1996, acquiring the NASCAR Winston Cup Championship with Terry Labonte.

Ty Norris, Executive Vice President of DEI, emphasized, "This is a new beginning for the NAPA team. There has been a void in the crew chief position since May and it is nice for Michael to have a partner. Michael and Slugger already have a good personal relationship and driver/crew chief chemistry is the most important element to success. We're ecstatic that Slugger can work the remaining twelve races with us, which will enable us to be stronger entering 2002."

-dei

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About this article
Series NASCAR Cup
Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Dale Jarrett , Terry Labonte , Michael Waltrip , Robert Yates
Teams Yates Racing , Dale Earnhardt Incorporated