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The Intimidator

"Ralph Dale Earnhardt"

April 29, 1951- February 18, 2001

To Millions of NASCAR racing fans, Sunday's running of the Daytona 500 was to be the start of a thrilling run for an unprecidented 8th Winston Cup Championship for Dale Earnhardt. But on the last lap, what looked like a race for the checkered flag turned out to be for me the darkest day in my NASCAR memory..Dale Earnhardt, the Intimidator, crashed head on into the wall losing his life instantly.. This page will be my way of dealing with the loss...I followed his career for over two decades and to me, NASCAR will not be the same.

"The Offical Announcement"

This is undoubtedly one of the toughest announcements that I've ever personally had to make. But after the accident in Turn 4 at the end of the Daytona 500, we've lost Dale Earnhardt. I have with me Dr. Steve Bohannon, who is a trauma doctor here in Daytona that's worked several events here at the Speedway. He can explain the medical practice that went on at the accident scene and over to the hospital. In a timing issue, we're here to tell you what we know. We don't know a lot. We don't enough to answer all your questions. Our prayers and wishes and effort right now this moment is with Teresa and the Earnhardt family, Richard Childress and his family and Dale Earnhardt Inc.

Dale Earnhardt 7 Times NASCAR Champion Birthdate April 29, 1951 Hometown Kannapolis, N.C.

Dale drives the Richard Childress owned, # 3 GM Goodwrench Service Plus Chevrolet. Crew Chief is Kevin Hamlin.

He was the first driver in the history of NASCAR to win the "Rookie of the Year Award" and the "NASCAR Winston Cup Series title" in back to back years 1979, 1980. He was driving for Rod Osterlund.

His other 6 NASCAR Winston Cup Series titles where all won driving for the Richard Childress Racing team, 1986, '87, '90, '91, '93, and '94.

Was the first 3-time winner of the Winston Select, 1987, '90 and '93. He has also won three IROC Championships, 1990 and '95, '99.

On his 20th try, Feb. '98, Dale finally won the elusive Daytona 500 trophy.

Feb. 18, 2001, Dale Earnhardt Sr. died as the result of a crash in the last lap of the Daytona 500. He was the best at what he did, and passed away doing what he loved to do. Our condolences to the Earnhardt family, Dale will be dearly missed by his fans and all of NASCAR.

Dale's Bio"

Born Ralph Dale Earnhardt, on April 29, 1951, in Kannapolis, North Carolina. His father, Ralph Earnhardt, was a well-known racecar driver, and Dale Earnhardt began racing himself on the local tracks at the age of 15. He dropped out of school in the ninth grade to race full-time and work as a mechanic. In 1973, Ralph Earnhardt died of a heart attack at the racetrack while working on his car. Two years later, in May 1975, his son made his own stock car racing debut, finishing 22nd in the World 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

In 1978, Earnhardt's racing caught the attention of Rod Osterlund, a racing sponsor based in California. After a tryout, Earnhardt was signed to his first full-time Winston Cup contract as Osterlund's only sponsored driver in 1979. That year, Earnhardt racked up his first win on the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) circuit at the Southeastern 500 in Bristol, Tennessee. By the end of the racing season, he had become the first driver to win over $200,000 in his rookie year; he was rewarded with NASCAR's prestigious Rookie of the Year honors. The next year proved to be even bigger for Earnhardt, as he won his first NASCAR season points championship, or Winston Cup Championship, barely edging out the veteran driver Cale Yarborough. With the win, Earnhardt became the first driver ever to win Rookie of the Year and the season championship back-to-back. After five solid years with Osterlund (although he didn't win another championship), Earnhardt joined Richard Childress' Chevrolet team in 1984. His career took off, beginning with five wins and a second Winston Cup Championship in 1986. The next year saw Earnhardt's best results yet, as he won 11 races and a third championship title, finishing in the top five in 21 out of 29 races.

Despite his undeniable success, Earnhardt earned a reputation early on for recklessness. Known as "the Intimidator," he was particularly prone to aggressively bumping other drivers out of the way in order to take the lead in a particularly close race. After a warning from the president of NASCAR in 1987, Earnhardt cleaned up his act and began developing better relationships with other drivers on the circuit. His success on the track continued, as he won his fourth Winston Cup Championship in 1990, earning a then-record $3,083,056 in winnings. In 1991, he took home yet another title. The streak was broken in 1992 after a series of mechanical failures, but Earnhardt bounced back the following year to win a sixth Winston Cup.

With a win at the AC Delco 500 in his home state of North Carolina in 1994, Earnhardt won his seventh Winston Cup Championship, tying the legendary Richard Petty for most career titles. For the third time in five years, he topped the $3 million mark in earnings, and was indisputably the king of stock car racing. The records kept on falling for Earnhardt throughout the 1990s, although he failed to win another Winston Cup. In 1996, he became the first driver to start in 500 consecutive Winston Cup races. The following year, Earnhardt broke $30 million in career earnings, the most ever for a racecar driver.

The only major victory that had eluded Earnhardt up until that point was the crown jewel of stock car racing—the Daytona 500, held in Daytona, Florida. He had finished second in the race four times, missing wins by devastatingly thin margins in 1990, 1991, and 1995. He survived a harrowing crash in 1997, only to return in fine form in February 1998, when he won his first Daytona in 20 career starts, breaking a dismal string of 59-straight losses overall. He finished eighth in points that season for his 18th top 10 finish in his 20-year career.

Earnhardt had two sons, Dale Jr. and Kerry (both of whom are also drivers), and two daughters, Kelly and Taylor, from his first two marriages. He married his third wife, Teresa, in 1982, with whom he had another daughter, Taylor. The family lived on a farm in North Carolina. Known by the nicknames "the Man in Black" and "Ironhead" as well as "the Intimidator," Earnhardt was beloved by fans as the self-promoted "bad boy" of NASCAR racing. He died on February 18, 2001, after crashing his stock car on the last turn of the last lap of the Daytona 500

"Earnhardt Statistics"

0 - Wins at Watkins Glen, Loudon (N.H.), Homestead, Las Vegas and Texas.

1 - Wins in the Brickyard 400, NASCAR's biggest payday.

2 - Number of the car Dale drove during his first championship season (1980).

3 - Wins in The Winston, NASCAR's mid-season all-star race at Charlotte.

4 - International Race of Champions titles.

7 - Career Winston Cup championships.

9 - Wins at Darlington Raceway, one short of David Pearson's career win total at the South Carolina superspeedway.

10 - Wins at Talladega Superspeedway.

11 - Wins in 1987, the most he recorded in any season.

12 - Wins in the Gatorade Twin 125-mile qualifying races at Daytona, including 10 consecutive wins in the 1990s.

13 - Total wins at NASCAR's fastest superspeedways, Daytona and Talladega.

16 - Career starts before he won his first race, at Bristol in 1979.

17 - Full seasons of driving for Richard Childress, whom Dale finished one spot ahead of in his 1975 Winston Cup debut at Charlotte.

18 - Position he was running in with five laps to go at Talladega in October, his last victory.

19 - Championship points he beat Cale Yarborough by to win his first title in 1980.

22 - Career poles.

24 - Age at which he started the 1975 World 600, his first Winston Cup start.

27 - Career short-track wins.

31 - Total number of DNFs he posted while driving for Bud Moore in 1982 and 1983, his only two years driving a Ford.

34 - Career wins at Daytona International Speedway, including Busch series and non-points races.

70 - Second-place finishes in Winston Cup racing. 76 - Career Winston Cup wins.

95 - Career DNFs.

265 - Championship points he finished behind Bobby Labonte last year in attempting to win his eighth title.

281 - Top-five finishes.

489 - Points he beat runner-up Bill Elliott by to win 1987 championship.

608 - Points lead he held over Bill Elliott with seven races remaining in 1987 season.

648 - Consecutive Winston Cup start streak.

676 - Career starts in Winston Cup racing.

830 - Total laps led, out of 1,000 run, in winning the two 500-lap Dover races in 1989. By comparison, Tony Stewart, who swept Dover last year, led approximately half of Earnhardt's 1989 total.

$41,538,362 - Total career earnings.

Thanks for the great ride #3.

In Lieu of Flowers Send Donations To

Foundation Of The Carolina's
P.O. Box 34769 Charlotte, NC 28234-4769


Dale Earnhardt Inc

1675 Coddle Creek Highway Mooresville, NC 28115

Thank You For Visiting My Earnhardt Tribute Page..Please Sign My Guestbook"