Waltrip NAPA Headed To BDR

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HIGH POINT, N.C. - NASCAR driver Michael Waltrip and NAPA Auto parts announced today they have entered into a partnership with Bill Davis Racing for the 2006 NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series season.

Nine victories and eight poles are shared between the parties including three Daytona 500 rings and a Southern 500 victory. Bill Davis Racing’s achievements lured Waltrip to their High Point, N.C. race shop.

"I like the way Bill does business and he has created a strong organization,- Waltrip explained. "NAPA and I look forward to continuing our winning ways at Bill Davis Racing on the track, as well as extending our successful marketing efforts off the track."

Waltrip and NAPA were teamed up by the late Dale Earnhardt in 2001 when their initial race together put them in victory lane at the Daytona 500. Since then, the pair has taken advantage of their union to create one of the strongest partnerships in the sport.

"Teaming with Dale Earnhardt, Inc. and Dale [Earnhardt] Jr. for the past five years has been the highlight of my NASCAR NEXTEL Cup career to date," continued Waltrip. "I look toward my future with NAPA and BDR with gratitude to DEI for the memories and friendships I have formed."

"It is no secret that our association with Michael has been a key ingredient of our marketing efforts," said Bob Susor, president of NAPA AUTO PARTS. "Race fans associate NAPA AUTO PARTS with Michael Waltrip and vice versa. Michael has promoted our brand in his own unique style. Moving forward, we are pleased to announce our continued support of Michael Waltrip and a new partnership with Bill Davis Racing. This begins a new chapter in NASCAR team sponsorship for NAPA. We would like to take this opportunity to express our sincere appreciation for the many successes NAPA has enjoyed during our tenure with DEI such as two NASCAR Truck Series Championships and two Daytona 500 victories. We will value our DEI association and wish them nothing but the best in their future efforts."

Next year will be Bill Davis Racing’s 14th year of competition on the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series level, the team’s 19th year in NASCAR competition. As a NASCAR team owner, Davis has worked with some of the sport’s top drivers achieving wins in all three premier divisions of NASCAR, totaling 18 victories, 100 top-five finishes and 250 top-10 finishes.

Davis currently fields one full-time NEXTEL Cup Series team with Scott Wimmer driving the No. 22 Caterpillar Dodge Charger. In 2004, Davis expanded his operations to house three full-time truck teams in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series. The teams include Mike Skinner in the No. 5 Toyota Tundra, Bill Lester in the No. 22 Toyota Tundra, and Johnny Benson in the No. 23 Toyota Tundra.

"NAPA and Michael Waltrip are the perfect combination to re-establish our two-car Cup team in 2006," said Davis. "NAPA and Michael are held in high regard in our sport and have been successful in each Series they have competed. We plan to build on their success and create a very competitive team next year and beyond."

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