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Those wondering what Dale Earnhardt Jr. will be driving next year when he begins a five-year contract with Hendrick Motorsports have an answer. Earnhardt Jr. will leave his famous No. 8 car sponsored by Budweiser behind and pick up the No. 88 next season. His main sponsor will now be Mountain Dew, along with Amp Energy drink and the National Guard, while Budweiser will be jumping ship to sponsor Kasey Kahne's car for Evernham Motorsports.

Though many wanted to see Earnhardt Jr.'s No. 8 follow him to Hendrick Motorsports, DEI owner Teresa Earnhardt, also Earnhardt Jr.'s step-mom, wouldn't give it up. The No. 88 has historical significance for the Earnhardt family too, though, as Jr.'s grandfather, Ralph Earnhardt, drove the No. 88 Oldsmobile back in 1957. The No. 88 was donated to Earnhardt Jr. in a selfless act by Robert Yates Racing, who asked NASCAR to transfer the retired number to Earnhardt Jr.'s new ride to keep the legacy alive.

[Source: blogs.courant.com]


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  • 14 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      I`m not much of a NASCAR fan, but I hope next year Dale jr kicks A**!
      His stepmother sounds like a real beehotch.
      • 7 Years Ago
      those are some terrible colors - who designed these cars?

      There has to be a better way to display all those advertisers on the car - why does Nascar hold on to the slap a sponsor sticker on mentality.

      Pay someone to take all the sponsors and merge it all together so it works on the car - then you can even merchandise a model of the car people will actually want to buy.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Good news for Dale Jr. Fans, all they have to do is add another 8 to their arms/car/house/baby.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Oh man, now I have to hit the gym to pump up my biceps so I can fit another "8" next to the original "8" i have tattooed on there! Heck ya I love NASCAR!!!

      I do, however, wish Stroh's beer had sponsored his car. I am also quite sad that they switched from Winston to Nextel cup. Nothing quite like beer, cigarettes, and racing.

      -The Detroit Bandit
      • 7 Years Ago
      I thought the Monte Carlo was being cut next year.

      Here's the deal, don't cut the name. Just make a better or "real" Monte.
      • 7 Years Ago
      most of the guys who have poured their life into NASCAR are class acts. its the ones who are in it for the money that sully the sport.

      Yates has been around a long time and benefits from that perspective. Drivers are the face of the sport, and the fans are what give the sport legs. Everyone else is a facilitator. I think you get to contribute to the heart of the sport after you have been in for about 20years.

      Now let's get back to the racing!
        • 7 Years Ago
        I really don't give a shit what or who he drives for as long as he's shed of the "DRAGON LADY"! I wish he would drop the "JR", his father is dead and that means he should be "DALE EARNHARDT"! EVEN IF HIS BROTHER kERRY IS OLDER HE SHOULD STILL GET RID OF THE "JR".
      • 7 Years Ago
      It is being cut. That's the Impala you see there, though there's not much resemblance I agree.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Way to go from an awesome red and black theme to something that looks like it's from the early 90s. Block letter this and boring colors that. Is that what the difference between Budweiser's graphic designers and the National Guard's?
      • 7 Years Ago
      I hope those are not the car designs he is actually using...because those are terrible.
      • 7 Years Ago
      at least he can drink his sponsor in victory lane now. "yeah, the moutain dew chevy impala felt like a top 5 car today and when Humpy Crawdad spun and took out the other 3 cars in front i just drove 'er home. just one of them racin' deals." and then take a big slug of 'Dew. I love NASCAR!
      • 7 Years Ago
      I say that the red army of fans will stay that, red, I think most are in it for the beer and will go somewhere else besides green (Dew), he isn't much of a driver (team mate Truex is in the chase in same equipment) or person for that matter, he threw his stepmother in front of a truck basically and none of it was her fault, I mean his dad left her sole ownership of that company and not any of it to his kids (4 of them) yet he demanded ownership and she said no like any business person would, classy lady.
      • 7 Years Ago
      The #88 is not a retired number- NASCAR doesn't retire numbers, and they haven't even retired the #3 of Dale Earnhardt nor the #43 of Richard Petty.

      In fact, if you turn on the TV this weekend, odds are good that you will see a #88 stock car sponsored by Snickers running laps around the track
        • 7 Years Ago
        while probably the wrong wording, the intent is that Yates currently uses it and is retiring (sounds better than firing, letting go, rightsizing,...) their use of the number.

        In NASCAR, you technically apply every year for the number though its never been taken away while in use. in effect, yates gave up rather than traded its first rights.
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