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Fans Behind Dale Jr.

Oct. 10, 2002

Issue #8  

"The road to victory requires the heart of a champion."

Happy birthday, Jr!

Welcome to the "Fans Behind Dale Jr." newsletter. You are receiving this newsletter because you requested a subscription. Unsubscribe instructions are at the end of this newsletter.

Fans Behind Dale Jr. is a weekly newsletter spun off the Web site devoted to the driver and his fans. Get updated information on Dale Earnhardt Jr., including race information, news, appearances, where to find Dale Jr. on the Web, and more.



"I love racing here at home, and now we're coming in loaded and ready. The Talladega win was awesome, and if you think our restrictor-plate engines were good, I think the boys back at the DEI engine room have been working just as hard to give us some serious power this weekend as well. We had three DEI cars in the top eight on Sunday, so maybe we'll see the same thing here. No holds barred, we're ready."
        Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Charlotte race preview)

Oct. 13: UAW-GM Quality 500, Lowe's Motor Speedway, Charlotte, N.C.
TV: 12:00 p.m. NBC; RADIO: 12:00 p.m. MRN

Dale Jr. at Charlotte
Winston Cup starts: 6; best start: 1 (May 2000); best finish: 4 (Oct. 2001; May 2000)
This race last year: Start: 9; finish: 4

Dale Jr. and the entire Budweiser team made their first Winston Cup start at Lowe's Motor Speedway in 1999, qualifying 8th and finishing 16th in their debut. In 2000, Dale Jr. won a memorable Winston all-star race that still rates among his most treasured moments, and then followed that with a track record Bud Pole qualifying lap several nights later. The team has recorded two fourth place finishes since then, including this event last season.

"Charlotte has been a place where we've run really, really well, but other than the Winston, we don't have the finishes to prove it. (In the 2002 spring race), we were just chillin'… we led the race and were just sitting there with the fastest car, then we got put into the wall by another car. I think our car must have had some sort of magnet in it that caused that white car to crash into us every week for a month or so. I learned a lot about not putting myself in a position where that kind of thing can bite us. We (the Budweiser team) know we're not up there in the points like we believe we should be, but we have momentum and the confidence to go out and finish this season off with some killer finishes. We even have a shot at getting back into the top 10 and getting a seat at the banquet." (From Dale Jr. race preview)

Weekend schedule:
Oct. 10: Bud Pole qualifying, 7 p.m. TNT/6:45 p.m. PRN
Oct. 12: NWCS Happy Hour, 12 p.m., TNT
Oct. 12: BGN Little Trees 300, 1 p.m. TNT/12:30 p.m. PRN

*All times eastern

"It was a great car. A great car. This is the same car that we've won all of these restrictor-plate races with, and it just does what I want it to do. (Crew chief) Tony Eury and Tony (Eury) Jr. just prepared a beautiful piece of a race car. We weren't as dominant here as we had been, because I think everyone else is a lot more competitive. They're catching up to us on these superspeedways, but we knew we had a good car and a great engine from (DEI chief engine builder) Richie Gilmore, so we hung tight with our plan and it worked out. To be that fast and to get that great of fuel mileage is unbelievable." (From Talladega race report)

Oct. 1: Dale Jr. and the Bud team finished 1st at Talladega.
Laps led: 56; Started: 13th
Money won:$1,166,040

2002 Winston Cup stats
    Poles: 2
    Starts: 30
    Wins: 2
    Top 5s: 8
    Top 10s: 12
    Current points standing: 13th (-477 from leader)

  • Happy Birthday, Dale Jr.; Ruth Mattern, (10/10)
  • Rocker Crow among the growing NASCAR faithful; (10/8)
  • Earnhardt, Stewart gave buddy system a try; (10/8)
  • Earnhardt Jr.'s chassis a fast number; (10/7)
  • Inside Dish: DEI wins one from the pits; (10/8)
  • Sponsor Celebration Station; (10/6)
  • Earnhardt Jr. can't outrun inevitable growing pains; St. Petersburg Times (10/6)
  • Take it easy on Little E; Chronicle Online (10/4)

    Dale Jr. Pit Board Charity news
    This week, the Pit Board Charity will donate $1,088 to the Victory Junction Gang Camp. The year-to-date total is $19,671.00. For information on donating, visit the Web site.

  • Updated Oct. 24: Outdoor World-Atlanta: Sign up is Wednesday, Oct. 23, 6-10 p.m. and Thursday, Oct. 24, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Only 300 people will be chosen for autographs, and autographs are limited to one per person. Must be present for 1:30 p.m. drawing, only one entry per person. To be one of the 300, come to the store and fill out an entry form for the 1:30 p.m. drawing. Dale Jr. will arrive at 5 p.m. and sign autographs for the 300 fans whose names were drawn. A special walk-through line for PHOTOS ONLY will also be available. Because of prior engagements, Dale Jr. will be leaving the store promptly at 7 p.m. and no personal pictures with Dale Jr. will be allowed..The #8 car will also be on display from 1-7 p.m. on Oct. 24, and Dale Earnhardt, Jr. autographed Remington guns will be on sale.

    Oct. 29: Dale Jr. will be making an appearance at Dick's Sporting Goods in Matthews, NC from 5 to 7 p.m.

    Oct. 24: Kerry Earnhardt will be signing autographs at the Last Lap store in Kennesaw, Ga. Phone #: (678) 290-9875
    Also at this appearance: The Dale Earnhardt Memorial Trailer; #3 cutaway car that Dale won with in Atlanta; the 1997 Wrangler car that Dale drove; the #8 Gossamer car. Cars will be on display from Oct. 24 to Oct. 26.


  • Received an e-mail that Dale Jr. is in the Nov. issue of Motor Trend magazine.

  • Also received an e-mail that he makes an appearance in the Nov. issue of Playgirl as one of the 10 Sexiest Racers Of NASCAR. Steve Park also made the list. It should be noted that the photos are at-track.

    Have information on a Dale Jr. appearance? E-mail me and the information will appear in the next newsletter. Please note that I am not responsible for any misleading information. I only print what is given to me. In other words, don't kill the messenger!

  • Harold Hinson: The official NASCAR photographer for Anheuser-Busch Inc., Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Dale Earnhardt Inc. has some great photos on his Web site.

    Have you found an unique or favorite Dale Jr.-related site? Let me know.

    VOTE! for Dale Jr. as the Most Popular Driver.
    Click the image. Remember you can vote daily.

  • Fan of the Week
    Fan photos and stories about their favorite driver can be found at the newsletter's Home site. Tell me why you should be Fan of the Week (think 'How bad have you got it?'). Every newsletter will feature a different fan. Or submit your story and/or photo and you might just see it here as part of a Fan of the Week feature.

    Speak Out
    Should NASCAR add more races and/or make changes to the schedule to accomodate it?

    Ted & Anita in Ohio: We do wish that Nascar would add one more race to the already full schedule and that would be one at Kentucky Speedway.There was an attempt this year to change the location of one of the races in 2003 to Ky, but this didn't happen.
    It really doesn't make sense to us that D.E.I., Richard Childress Racing, and other top name racing organizations seem to love this track and have nothing but praise for it when testing there; yet Na$car balks at putting a race at Ky. The drivers already have such a full, demanding schedule it seems unfair to add more races. Maybe the answer is to trade off and exchange a track the drivers are not that fond of for races at Kentucky Speedway. Just our humble opinion.

    Michelle Morley, Houston, Tx: NASCAR should not add more races seeing as the drivers already spend practically their whole lives on the road. I think it would be a nice change to let drivers vote on the schedule, allowing them to race where the majority enjoys it the most. This would make it possible for newer tracks to actually get races, and of course some would lose races, but our drivers would have the most enjoyable experience possible.

    Judi B.: I look forward to the races each weekend but I realize what a drain this must be on drivers - their lives and their families. I think it might be good to shorten the schedule and perhaps have one or two fan centered events where fans could connect with their favorite driver(s) during the down time. And not that anyone is asking, but get the fans out of the garage area!

    This week: Should smaller fuel cells be used at every restrictor-plate race?
    Speak Out

    From a Jeff Gordon fan:
    (Editor's note: I received this e-mail from Laura & Colton, and wanted to share it with all of you!) CONGRATULATIONS to Jr. on his win today- how awesome for you guys to see! Of course our Jeff did not do as well, but that is just the way it goes- like they say, win a few, lose a few, right? Anyhow, the support of the Nascar fans means so much to us, as we are trying to raise public awareness of this strange disease. Thanks for the support and please keep in touch on his page! Love, Laura.

    You can visit Colton's page here.

    Would you like to have seen Tony Stewart challenge Dale Jr. for the Dega win?
    Cast your vote here. The final results will be posted here next week. If you have an idea for a poll question, please e-mail me.

    Last week's poll
    Should there be a change on Dale Jr's crew? 62% of voters said 'yes,' while 26% said 'no' and 5% 'not sure.' Thanks to all who voted!

    Trivia question
    Congrats to Michelle of Houston, Tx who was the first to correctly answer last week's question: Dale Jr. got his third straight victory of the 1999 Busch season here. Watkins Glen (Michelle added: "It was June 27th. I remember it like it was yesterday.")

    This week's trivia
    Dale Jr. captured his first Winston Cup win at Texas Motor Speedway, his ? WC career start. If you know the answer and are the first to reply, you'll see your name here in the next newsletter. (Please include your location.) Submit answer

    It's Dale Jr's birthday! If you were going to give him one gift, without cost in mind, what would it be?
    Michelle, Houston, Tx: If I was going to give Jr., "the guy who has everything," a birthday gift, I would remember that there are a few things he does not have, and one is privacy. If I could give him anything I would act as a kind of secretary, taking all incoming calls and dealing with any person seaking his attention. I would make sure that only people he wanted to see could see him, and he could do whatever he wanted without interruption for the entire day.

    This week's challenge
    If Dale Jr. pens another book, what should be the title? Some of the best replies will be in the next issue.

    Happy birthday, Jr!
    What a birthday gift! There shouldn't have been any doubt in anyone's mind (although I'm sure there was) that when the cars rolled onto the track at Dega, the #8 Bud Chevy would be up front all day long. Quick pitstops, sauve driving and sheer determination put Jr. in Victory Lane there for the third straight time, where he joins elite company. Buddy Baker is the only other driver to win 3 straight races at NASCAR's largest track. All those in favor of renaming Talladega to 'Daledega,' say aye!

    When Jr. won the race Sunday, I immediately thought 'oh boy, the newsletter next week is gonna be schweet!' We've got the win AND Jr's 28th birthday packed into one issue. Happy birthday, Jr. If not for qualifying Thursday night, you should have a much deserved day off to kick back and chill! Pull out the video games, grab some chips & salsa, and think about how you're gonna spend that cool mil you won at Dega!

    Til next time, go Junior!

    An aside: Imagine my surprise when I put the date and issue number on this newsletter: Oct. 10, Issue #8. Either something funny's goin' on, or I'm just that lucky!

    P.S. In honor of Dale Jr's birthday, stop by little Jessica's guestbook and leave a message! She's a Dale Jr. fan who is battling a strange and rare eye disease.

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