PREVIEW: DALE EARNHARDT JR.
(NO. 88 NATIONAL GUARD/AMP ENERGY CHEVROLET)
VENUE: DOVER INTERNATIONAL SPEEDWAY (ONE-MILE CONCRETE OVAL)
CIRCUIT: NASCAR SPRINT CUP SERIES (RACE 28 OF 36)
DATE: SEPT. 26, 2010 (400 LAPS, 400 MILES)
AT DOVER: In 21 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series starts at Dover (Del.) International Speedway, Dale Earnhardt Jr. has one win, four top-five finishes and seven top-10s. He has completed 98.9 percent of all the laps he's attempted (8,312 of 8,404 total) and has paced the field for 366 laps.
POINTS AFTER NEW HAMPSHIRE: After scoring a fourth-place finish last Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Earnhardt moved up to 18th in the Sprint Cup driver standings.
ON TOP THE PIT BOX: The Cup event in May 2009 at Dover marked crew chief Lance McGrew's first time calling a race for the No. 88 team. Earnhardt climbed from his 22nd starting position that day to crack the top 10 by Lap 140. He ran as high as third before crossing the finish line 12th to record his best Dover result in a Hendrick Motorsports chassis.
DOVER VICTORY: Earnhardt scored his Sprint Cup win at Dover on Sept. 23, 2001, after starting third and leading 193 laps. This was the first race following the events of Sept. 11, and Earnhardt displayed the American flag during his victory lap to pay tribute to the victims.
DOVER CHASSIS: Crew chief Lance McGrew and the No. 88 engineers will unload Hendrick Motorsports Chassis No. 88-556, which is the first car McGrew built from scratch for Earnhardt. This chassis, which Earnhardt debuted in 2009 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, last was raced to a 25th-place finish at Chicagoland Speedway in July.
HENDRICK AT DOVER: In 53 races (163 starts) at Dover, Hendrick Motorsports has tallied 12 wins, 40 top-five finishes, 70 top-10s and has led 4,574 laps. The organization owns the most wins and pole positions (seven) all-time at the one-mile concrete oval. Most recently, Jimmie Johnson swept the Dover events in 2009.
CHEVY SALUTES AMERICAN HEROES: Chevrolet, the official ride of Country Music, once again is honoring our men and women in uniform by bringing back Chevrolet Salutes America's Heroes. Launching Sept. 13 at www.youreverydayhero.com, this promotion encourages people to nominate friends or family members who, while in uniform, have demonstrated the military spirit of overcoming obstacles, inspiring others and positively impacting their country and community. The winner will receive a trip to The 44th Annual CMA Awards on Wednesday, Nov. 10, and a new 2011 Chevrolet Cruze.
CELL PHONES FOR SOLDIERS: Helping American troops keep in touch with their loved ones is now as easy as bringing a gently used mobile phone to a NASCAR event. Cell Phones for Soldiers raises money through the collection of gently used mobile phones and will have drop-off boxes this weekend at Dover. In addition to helping troops call home, the first 100 fans donating gently used phones will receive a hat, courtesy of the GM Military Discount program. During the last six years, Cell Phones for Soldiers has provided more than one million pre-paid calling cards and 60 million minutes of calling time to soldiers overseas. Visit www.cellphonesforsoldiers.com for information on how to donate at one of 3,000 collection points nationwide or to download a pre-paid, pre-addressed mailing label.
GUARD GARAGE: Visit www.DaleJrGuardGarage.com and click on the "Most Extreme Fan" button to share your video about what the National Guard means to you. One lucky fan will be chosen among the entries to win a guitar autographed by Earnhardt. Join the Guard Garage Fan Club to stay up-to-date with National Guard drivers and score free ringtones, wallpapers and more.
FREE JR NATION CREW FAN CLUB: Join the JR Nation Crew Fan Club for a chance to win an autographed firesuit. The exclusive club, which is free to join, offers fans an online hub with chat rooms, forums and blogs from JR Motorsports personalities. For more information, visit www.JRNation.com.
AMP UP THE 88: Mark Jacobs, jackman for the No. 88 Chevrolet, will participate in a live video chat with fans on Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. ET on AMP Energy's website, www.AMPUPthe88.com. The site features weekly chats with a special guest or a member of the No. 88 AMP Energy/National Guard team, daily sweepstakes with autographed No. 88 AMP Energy/National Guard team memorabilia, videos, photos and more.
DALE EARNHARDT JR., DRIVER, NO. 88 NATIONAL GUARD/AMP ENERGY CHEVROLET (ON DOVER.): "The team is coming off a good run, and we want to build on that. It's been awhile since we've had a good run at Dover, but it's a tough track. Dover is a rough track and that concrete is bumpy."
LANCE McGREW, CREW CHIEF, NO. 88 NATIONAL GUARD/AMP ENERGY CHEVROLET (ON BUILDING MOMENTUM AFTER FINISHING FOURTH LAST WEEK AT NEW HAMPSHIRE.): "It's tough because it's more than just one event that builds momentum. It's nice, and it was a good run. It's a place we historically run well at. I'd prefer to go to a place we historically run well after a good finish, but we haven't run well at Dover, and it's been awhile since Dale has run well there. I'm hoping that some of the things we've learned over the past several weeks carry over and we see a positive weekend out of it. Dover is a real tough place, and your car has to be very, very good to be fast there all day long, and the driver has to like it. I'm hoping for good things but I'm also cautiously optimistic."
McGREW (ON SETTING UP A CAR DIFFERENTLY FOR CONCRETE VERSUS ASPHALT.): "I think with anything the concrete brings some stability to the setup where it doesn't change as much with track temperature. We really struggled with the tire rubber buildup earlier this year. It seemed to be because of the tire compound that Goodyear brought, and it was more of an issue than we realized at the time. You worry about the rubber buildup on the track more than anything else, and it's not anything you can control in the setup. You just have to position your car on the racetrack to where it least affects you."
McGREW (ON IMPORTANCE OF PIT ROAD AT DOVER.): "It's nice if you get a decent qualifying effort there because there are a couple of really good pit boxes that give you an advantage -- literally it's only about two or three. Pit road there is so narrow. We've gotten damage getting out the pit box or been sandwiched between two guys. As treacherous as the track is and how easy it is to get in trouble, I'd say it's even easier on pit road."
Courtesy of Hendrick Motorsports.
Media Relations | No. 88 AMP Energy / National Guard Racing
Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s Official Site - www.dalejr.com