BUSCH: Menard to drive for new #11 DEI team

PAUL MENARD NASCAR Busch Series -- ...

NASCAR Busch Series -- #11 Menards Chevrolet
Team -- Dale Earnhardt, Inc., Mooresville, N.C.

Menards Super Home Centers and Dale Earnhardt, Inc., Join Forces To Campaign #11 Menards Chevrolet for Busch Series Rookie Paul Menard

MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Wednesday, June 23, 2004) -- Menards Super Home Centers and Dale Earnhardt, Inc., (DEI) have joined forces in the NASCAR Busch Series to run rookie driver Paul Menard in 2004 and 2005 as part of a long-term agreement announced today.

The 23-year-old Menard, who has driven in 20 Busch Series events the past two seasons, will assume the role of driver of the #11 Menards Chevrolet as part of the DEI stable of drivers and teams beginning with the New England 200 at New Hampshire International Speedway July 24. He will continue in the Busch Series through the 2005 seasons with the intention of moving up to the Nextel Cup Series at a point in time thereafter.

"Since I began racing when I was 7 years old, I've dreamed about racing at the top of the sport in NASCAR," Menard said. "To have the opportunity to race for Dale Earnhardt, Inc., and Teresa Earnhardt, is pretty amazing. I'll have a great teammate in the DEI family who's currently running for the championship right now in Martin Truex, Jr. I'm looking forward to not only taking a big step forward in my own racing career, but to helping him and his team win the Busch title this season. I really can't wait to get started."

In addition to six Busch Series races in 2003, Menard also competed in a mixed bag of Nextel Cup, NASCAR Truck Series and ARCA series events, which featured an ARCA victory at Talladega last September and an ARCA pole at Winchester, Ind., in August.

"Dale Earnhardt, Inc., has a long history of partnering with companies that share the same commitment as we do when it comes to motorsports and winning championships," said Teresa Earnhardt, president and CEO of Dale Earnhardt, Inc. "John Menard and his organization share that passion, which is one of the reasons we have re-entered the NASCAR Busch Series with Paul as our driver. We have both won championships in motorsports and look to continue that winning tradition."

The collaboration of Menards, the largest home improvement chain in the Midwest, with the tremendous racing resources at DEI is something president John Menard hopes will yield the ultimate results both on the racetrack and in the ongoing efforts to drive traffic into Menards stores.

"We're really excited for both Paul and the direction of our company by way of this association," said John Menard, whose Eau Claire, Wis.-based home improvement store chain totals more than 200 locations in 10 upper Midwest states. "We hope to make this something all our team members can be a part of through advertising, promotion and, most importantly, winning. When our cars win on the track, so does everyone who works and shops at Menards."

The #11 Menards Chevrolet features a family of associate sponsors that include Pittsburgh Paints, Energizer Batteries, Turtle Wax Car Care Products, Moen Faucets, Peak Antifreeze, Quaker State, Morton Salt and Empire Levels.


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Drivers Dale Earnhardt , Martin Truex Jr. , Paul Menard