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  1. #1
    The Commish YanksRockMan's Avatar
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    Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins one for his dad!

    Here's the story:

    Dale Jr. wins emotional Pepsi 400
    By Dave Rodman, Turner Sports Interactive
    July 8, 2001
    12:33 PM EDT (1633 GMT)

    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. swapped the tables on his Dale Earnhardt, Inc. teammate Michael Waltrip and scored an emotional victory in the 43rd Pepsi 400 Saturday night at Daytona International Speedway.

    Dale Earnhardt Jr. took his third career Winston Cup win.

    With Waltrip running as rear guard, Earnhardt Jr. scored his first NASCAR Winston Cup points victory 11 years to the day his late father, Dale Earnhardt, won his first Winston Cup points race at Daytona. Earnhardt, the career victories leader at Daytona, was killed on the final lap of the season-opening Daytona 500 while he ran third behind his two drivers.

    Earnhardt ended up .123 seconds ahead of Waltrip. Elliott Sadler finished third, Ward Burton was fourth and Bobby Labonte was fifth.

    “Y’all know who that’s for, guys,” Earnhardt Jr. said over his in-car radio back to his crew on his cool-down lap.

    “The man behind you did it for you and don’t you forget that,” Earnhardt Jr.’s spotter, DEI vice president Ty Norris, replied.

    In a performance ripped from his late father’s Daytona race-winning manual, Earnhardt Jr. charged from sixth on a restart with six laps to go. He was fifth heading into Turn 3 on lap 155, moved to fourth coming off Turn 4 and was in second going into Turn 3 one lap later.

    When Dave Blaney, who had started the lap in second, did a magnificent job to keep from wrecking in the middle of a three-wide pack of traffic, Earnhardt Jr. spurted into the lead as lap 156 concluded. He went on to lead 116 of 160 laps, averaging 157.601 mph.

    “We had a great car -- it was all car -- 100 percent, I just had to hold on,” said Earnhardt Jr., who profusely thanked crew chief Tony Eury, who had won seven NASCAR Busch Series races here with his father, and car chief Tony Eury Jr.

    Of course, Earnhardt Jr. was prodded in the post-race reviews to recall his father.

    “He was with me tonight,” he said. “I don’t know I did it, but he was there. I’ll be crying sooner or later -- I don’t know -- I feel pretty good right now. I’m wore out now.


    Dale Earnhardt Jr. makes a pit stop for fuel and tires.


    “I dedicate this win to him. I mean, there ain’t nobody else I could dedicate it to that would mean more to me. I want to thank (his father’s widow) Teresa back home -- I hope she’s loving this ‘cause we sure are.”

    There was only one caution in the first 140 laps of the race. It occurred from lap 89-92 after Andy Houston hit the wall in Turn 4.

    Two cautions occurred in the last 20 laps, one of them a melee that involved no less than 12 cars and eliminated possible winners Sterling Marlin, Mike Skinner and Jeff Gordon. Two laps after the race went back to green, Gordon had an oil line come loose, bringing out the third and final caution and setting up the final six-lap shootout.

    “I hope them fans enjoyed it,” the winner said. “I know I was out front a lot but I didn’t know what else to do. Michael came in there the last two laps and I knew I didn’t have a whole lot to worry about. It was just a great race all the way around.” Earnhardt Jr. all night had set the stage for a tremendously heartwarming finale to more than four months of mourning for his father. Junior led huge chunks of the race after starting 13th and seemed to have the dominant car from the time he took the lead for the second time, at lap 57.

    Waltrip confirmed that but said he played his role and winning this race was not it.

    “I knew I was good but you never knew if you were gonna hit the hole,” Waltrip said of his move to get behind his teammate. “I hit the hole and that was my part. I didn’t even think about it (passing Earnhardt Jr.) -- I wasn’t gonna pass him for nothing -- I just wanted to push him home.”

    I just want to give a congratulations to him for winning the Pepsi400!
    Harry the K's Legends: 2009 Champs, 2010 Ruth Division Champions

    R.I.P Harry Kalas...Say hi to whitey for me

  2. #2
    I know this is a great story and everything, and I don't want to take anything away from "Little E" or his fans but don't you think for maybe the last 10 laps people kind of just let him win since they all adored his father and everything?

  3. #3
    I thought the same thing as I watched the last few laps. Power to him though. However he got it -- what a story. I can't imagine how he must feel. If someone did gas down -- power to him. It still won't bring Dale back, but it sure made Junior's career.

  4. #4
    All decked out... allybear's Avatar
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    What a great story! If you wrote that for a movie, it would be rejected as unbelievable, and it really happenned. I don't think anyone actually let him win, the guys who started out in front of him or were challenging him all had a lot of reasons to want to win too (Johnny Benson has never won a Winston Cup race, Ken Schrader hasn't won since '91, Bobby Labonte was last year's champion and is trying to stay in the top 10 this year), etc., so I don't think anyone actually let him win, but wow, it was incredible!!

    To be sane is more dramatic than to be mad - GK Chesterton, Orthodoxy

  5. #5
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    I think that Dale Earnhardt Jr is a man with a heart who win one for his dad. Dale Earnhardt was a great man who made NSCAR alive again Dale I slute you you are one of my heroes. Drink up Dale for winnig that Pepsi 400 Dale Earnhardt Jr you are a great man

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  6. #6
    Paulie's # 1 Fan # 21 Forever's Avatar
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    I'm not a racing fan but I'm sure his dad would be very proud of him!

  7. #7
    NYYF Cy Young

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    The only one who "let" him win was Michael Waltrip. Payback. I've heard a few rumblings about it being fixed and all, but I don't believe it. Is it really all that surprising that the two strongest cars in Daytona in February were also the two strongest cars in Daytona in July?

  8. #8
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    There was some reporter on the radio this AM talking about an article he wrote concerning that the race was "If not fixed, Little E was helped along". He clains most everyone in the pressbox felt something was up.
    --Jim


  9. #9
    NYYF Legend

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    Dale had a great, great car and he drove the hell out of it. There was nothing phoney orr fixed about the race. Certainly Michael Waltrip wanted Dale Jr to win the race and raced for second more than for first, but I am CONVINCED that Dale could be beaten by no one yesterday.
    Yogi is a National Treasure. Let's put him in a National Hall of Fame. The man has no peers.

  10. #10
    The Commish YanksRockMan's Avatar
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    I agree with you Nome, because according to the Orlando Sentinel, when they interviewed Little E, he said that he had the strongest car and his car was 100%.
    Harry the K's Legends: 2009 Champs, 2010 Ruth Division Champions

    R.I.P Harry Kalas...Say hi to whitey for me

  11. #11
    Watching the race it was pretty clear that Dale, Jr. had an awesome car that was much stronger than that of his competitors so I don't know why the media felt differently. I think that the majority of the drivers are so professional and so dedicated to the sport that there's no way they would throw a race just to get Dale the win. If the race was fixed Michael Waltrip wouldn't of had to block for Dale and hold everyone else off at the end of the race.

    -Deborah

  12. #12
    NYYF Cy Young

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    The media is really great at making something out of nothing. They can't just be happy for the kid, they have to make some big deal out of it. Little E had the strongest car all day, period. Yes, Michael blocked for him, just like Dale blocked for him and Dale Jr in the 500. So what?? He'd have probably won anyway, but Michael said he just wanted to be part of it when Dale Jr won and he had said all week he was determined to win that race. Determination, great skills and a really fast car is what will win you races, and Dale Jr had all 3 of them going for him Saturday. No fix was needed. Leave it to a few slimy members of the media to attempt to create contraversy. It disgusts me.

  13. #13
    NYYF Legend

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    More proof of the media's incompetance and their pandering to the sensational. It is beginning to look like the entire media world has become Philadelphia Inquirer like.

    Look at the evening news. In the two hours from 5 to 7 PM if there is more than 20 minutes of non repeated news, I'll eat my hat.
    The reporting profession has become lower than that of a snake oil salesman.
    Yogi is a National Treasure. Let's put him in a National Hall of Fame. The man has no peers.

  14. #14
    Butnud-Bombers.com
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    I don't like this sport BUT what Junior did for his father was the greatest thing a son can ever do for his father!

  15. #15
    NYYF Legend

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    Butnud, try to go to just one NASCAR Winston Cup race and see if you feel the same way you do now. There is a 500 mile race in the Pocono's later this month. Every year Pocono host two races, there is one in Dover Del. Try it. You might like it. Being there is so different from seeing it on TV.

    Andy
    Yogi is a National Treasure. Let's put him in a National Hall of Fame. The man has no peers.

  16. #16
    Originally posted by orangemom
    The media is really great at making something out of nothing. They can't just be happy for the kid, they have to make some big deal out of it. Little E had the strongest car all day, period. Yes, Michael blocked for him, just like Dale blocked for him and Dale Jr in the 500. So what?? He'd have probably won anyway, but Michael said he just wanted to be part of it when Dale Jr won and he had said all week he was determined to win that race. Determination, great skills and a really fast car is what will win you races, and Dale Jr had all 3 of them going for him Saturday. No fix was needed. Leave it to a few slimy members of the media to attempt to create contraversy. It disgusts me.
    AMEN! Damn media...I hate the media theyt can't just back off...they hafta try to make a controversy out of EVERYTHING. He won the race for his dead father....stop trying to take that away. For the media and everything they do to piss me off: :finger2:

  17. #17
    Addicted Member
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    Re: Dale Earnhardt Jr. wins one for his dad!

    Originally posted by YanksRockMan
    Here's the story:

    Dale Jr. wins emotional Pepsi 400
    By Dave Rodman, Turner Sports Interactive
    July 8, 2001
    12:33 PM EDT (1633 GMT)

    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Dale Earnhardt Jr. swapped the tables on his Dale Earnhardt, Inc. teammate Michael Waltrip and scored an emotional victory in the 43rd Pepsi 400 Saturday night at Daytona International Speedway.

    Dale Earnhardt Jr. took his third career Winston Cup win.

    With Waltrip running as rear guard, Earnhardt Jr. scored his first NASCAR Winston Cup points victory 11 years to the day his late father, Dale Earnhardt, won his first Winston Cup points race at Daytona. Earnhardt, the career victories leader at Daytona, was killed on the final lap of the season-opening Daytona 500 while he ran third behind his two drivers.

    Earnhardt ended up .123 seconds ahead of Waltrip. Elliott Sadler finished third, Ward Burton was fourth and Bobby Labonte was fifth.

    “Y’all know who that’s for, guys,” Earnhardt Jr. said over his in-car radio back to his crew on his cool-down lap.

    “The man behind you did it for you and don’t you forget that,” Earnhardt Jr.’s spotter, DEI vice president Ty Norris, replied.

    In a performance ripped from his late father’s Daytona race-winning manual, Earnhardt Jr. charged from sixth on a restart with six laps to go. He was fifth heading into Turn 3 on lap 155, moved to fourth coming off Turn 4 and was in second going into Turn 3 one lap later.

    When Dave Blaney, who had started the lap in second, did a magnificent job to keep from wrecking in the middle of a three-wide pack of traffic, Earnhardt Jr. spurted into the lead as lap 156 concluded. He went on to lead 116 of 160 laps, averaging 157.601 mph.

    “We had a great car -- it was all car -- 100 percent, I just had to hold on,” said Earnhardt Jr., who profusely thanked crew chief Tony Eury, who had won seven NASCAR Busch Series races here with his father, and car chief Tony Eury Jr.

    Of course, Earnhardt Jr. was prodded in the post-race reviews to recall his father.

    “He was with me tonight,” he said. “I don’t know I did it, but he was there. I’ll be crying sooner or later -- I don’t know -- I feel pretty good right now. I’m wore out now.


    Dale Earnhardt Jr. makes a pit stop for fuel and tires.


    “I dedicate this win to him. I mean, there ain’t nobody else I could dedicate it to that would mean more to me. I want to thank (his father’s widow) Teresa back home -- I hope she’s loving this ‘cause we sure are.”

    There was only one caution in the first 140 laps of the race. It occurred from lap 89-92 after Andy Houston hit the wall in Turn 4.

    Two cautions occurred in the last 20 laps, one of them a melee that involved no less than 12 cars and eliminated possible winners Sterling Marlin, Mike Skinner and Jeff Gordon. Two laps after the race went back to green, Gordon had an oil line come loose, bringing out the third and final caution and setting up the final six-lap shootout.

    “I hope them fans enjoyed it,” the winner said. “I know I was out front a lot but I didn’t know what else to do. Michael came in there the last two laps and I knew I didn’t have a whole lot to worry about. It was just a great race all the way around.” Earnhardt Jr. all night had set the stage for a tremendously heartwarming finale to more than four months of mourning for his father. Junior led huge chunks of the race after starting 13th and seemed to have the dominant car from the time he took the lead for the second time, at lap 57.

    Waltrip confirmed that but said he played his role and winning this race was not it.

    “I knew I was good but you never knew if you were gonna hit the hole,” Waltrip said of his move to get behind his teammate. “I hit the hole and that was my part. I didn’t even think about it (passing Earnhardt Jr.) -- I wasn’t gonna pass him for nothing -- I just wanted to push him home.”

    I just want to give a congratulations to him for winning the Pepsi400!
    I'm glad to see a NSCAR fan in Bronx-bombers.com Mantlemania like you're kind of style
    This is how much i hate the Redsux[img]http://www.computerpannen.com/cwm/contrib/paladin/flamethrower.gif[/img]

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