A DAYtona In The Life Of Dale Jr.
Good driver, good car, great racing, bad day for Dale Earnhardt Jr.
With a little more than 75 laps to go, Dale Jr. commits an aggressive driving error that takes out ten cars while he was riding on the bottom of the track one lap down to the leaders. The only good news was that even though he was involved, he skated through the melee with no damage to his car.
Brian Vickers was also a lap down and saw Dale Jr. trying to sneak around him on the inside track position. Dale Jr. was pushed beyond the double yellow marker line and could not advance. On the way back on to the racing part of the track, Dale Jr. caught Brian Vickers’ bumper and spun him up the track in front of the field taking out about 10 cars including the best running car of the day driven by Kyle Busch.
Brian Vickers was interviewed after the wreckage was cleared and stated that he felt that Dale Jr. had touched him on purpose. “NASCAR should penalize him” stating that a driver was penalized earlier in the week during the Bud Shootout and the cost assessed by NASCAR was five (5) laps. How come he was not penalized?, asked Vickers.
The truth for Dale Jr. was not having a good time judging many things all race long … mostly in the pits.
The first judgment mistake that happened early in the race was that Earnhardt overshot his pit box. This caused Dale Jr. to have to go back around and pit out of sequence placing him at the back of the field upon the restart.
Raindrops are fallin' on my head ... Image Credit: nascargirls via Twitter
His second judgment mistake happened on the round of pitstops before the Vickers accident. There, Dale Jr. placed his car at a slight angle in the pitbox and had his right front tire on the line. The NASCAR official tried to warn the pitcrew but they changed the right front tire and the official had to penalize Dale Jr. one full lap.
This had Dale Earnhardt Jr. frustrated and working hard to make up his lap before the pending rain came over the track.
Image Credit: Tinaodarby via Twitter
The Daytona 500 Race ended on Yellow Flag/Red Flag Caution due to rain with 48 laps to go.
In an after race interview, Dale Jr. was heard saying, “Vickers should have held his ground” and “My pit sign is pink and everyone else’s is pink – next week we will probably make ours yellow and everyone else will make theirs yellow."
Dale Jr. ended up finishing in 27th position in a field of 43 cars - on the same lap as the winner.
A bad day for Dale Earnhardt Jr. and the 88 AMP sponsored Chevrolet.
A good day for open-wheel ChampCar racing veteran AJ Allmendinger driving a Valvoline sponsored Dodge with a 3rd place podium finish in his first Daytona 500.
Matt Kenseth in a DeWalt sponsored Roush Fenway Ford won the race for the driver’s first win and team’s first ever win after 22 tries at Daytona, followed by Kevin Harvick in his Shell/Pennzoil sponsored George/Haas Chevrolet.
... notes from The EDJE
[autosport.com liked this post so much, they patterned their story after this posting]