With 11 top ten finishes in 14 races this year; Dale Earnhardt Jr. is having one of his best seasons in years. Since 2008 to be exact, the last year he had a race win. If he keeps it up this year will rival 2004, a year where he won six races and had 21 top ten finishes. The next NASCAR sprint cup race is at the Michigan International speedway. Every year at this time it is only natural that Dale Earnhardt Jr. is a big topic for discussion. Michigan International Speedway is where he won his last race; Father’s Day 2008,143 races ago. This time the discussion is different, this time he is running really well and is a serious contender.
Last week at Pocono Raceway, Dale Jr. and his team were facing a fuel strategy race. He led three times for 36 laps. He had a race winning car but had to pit for fuel to insure he did not run out in the final laps and have a bad finish. Dale Jr. said “We had a really, really good car, that was fun. That was the funnest car I’ve had all year and the best car I’ve had at Pocono in a long, long time.” His car was good enough for him to drive back to an eighth place finish. Good enough to improve his position in the standings from third to second, 10 points behind Matt Kenseth.
Hendrick motorsports had three of their four cars in the top 10 at Michigan last August. The only car not in the top 10 was Dale Jr’s. Dale Earnhardt Jr. is going into Michigan in the best position to win than he has had in a long time. “Just really trying not to be upset about (Pocono) because we did a lot of good things and have a lot to look forward to,” said Dale Jr.
After claiming victory on that Father’s Day in 2008, Dale Earnhardt Jr. said, “It’s special. You know, my daddy, he meant a lot to me. There’s a lot of people that I look up to that just happen to be great fathers themselves, role models for their sons. It means a lot to me to do well on Father’s Day. It’s a special day for my family, special for my sister. She’s very, very happy at home and in tears on the telephone, so it means a lot to her. I’m glad she’s as happy as she could possibly be today under circumstances. And it makes me feel good. I know I can’t tell my father happy Father’s Day, but I get the opportunity to wish it upon all of the other fathers out there, and I genuinely mean that when I say it, because that’s what today is all about. It’s for all of the fathers out there.”
We are all hoping that Dale Earnhardt Jr. can have a very special Fathers Day again at Michigan International Speedway.
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