The 2014 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Season may be the final season of Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Steve Letarte together, but they’re off to a final good run.
During Speedweeks at Daytona International Speedway, Earnhardt was among the top cars within the Sprint Unlimited and the Budweiser Duel, but it wasn’t until the official season kickoff that things turned into his favor. As the entire Cup Series field tried to race their way to the top at the Daytona 500, it was Earnhardt who managed to survive to win his second Daytona 500 championship.
After having to wait out more than six and a half hours for a rain delay and two lap shootout for a caution, no one was able to stop Earnhardt from his second Daytona 500, not even tape stuck around the grill opening.
Now with a win at Daytona and a spot in the new chase format, Earnhardt is off to a fast start to 2014. He could relax the rest of the season until the chase now that he is in per new chase format rules, but considering its his last season with Letarte as crew chief, it would be better for their last season together to end with good results.
The partnership between Earnhardt and Letarte has worked over the last few seasons, but 2014 is looking to be their best, following one of Earnhardt’s best seasons in 2013. Following the success of last season and being able to capitalize early in the new season, Earnhardt will be capable of producing great results in 2014.
Now, the real season begins at Phoenix, as it will also be the first test of seeing if Earnhardt and the No. 88 team can keep up their recent success.
Christy Valdez is a NASCAR writer for Rant Sports. Follow her on Twitter @Knowursports and on Facebook at On The Sidelines With Christy.