Celebration Weekend For Dale Jr

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Dale Earnhardt Jr. turned 34-years-old today and he hopes to continue the celebration with a trip to victory lane in Saturday night's Bank of America 500 at Lowe's Motor Speedway.

Earnhardt made his first career Sprint Cup Series start at LMS on May 30, 1999. Since his debut Earnhardt has recorded 18 wins, 85 top-five finishes, 135 top-10s and eight pole positions.

In 18 Sprint Cup starts at Lowe's Motor Speedway, Earnhardt has scored five top-five finishes and nine top-10s. He has led 312 laps and started from the pole position once, on May 28, 2000.

Crew chief Tony Eury, Jr. is hoping Earnhardt's past success and experience at LMS along with the what was accomplished at the track back in May will lead to good things Saturday night.

"That was a good two weeks for us at Lowe's," Eury, Jr. said. "We had trouble in the all-star race, but we came back for the 600 and had a really dominant car before we blew the right-rear (tire) out getting into the fence. At the recent test we tried some things we learned over the summer."

"You're there for eight days total in May, and there wasn't a whole lot we could do with the car. The car was pretty good the whole time we were there. We're going to compare some stuff from what we had over the summer to what we learned there in May."

Earnhardt's No. 88 Chevrolet will have a different look this weekend when it carries sponsor AMP Energy Relaunch colors and a primary orange paint scheme.

And that's fine with Earnhardt.

"Orange is just my favorite color," he said. "I don't know why I prefer it, I just do. That's like asking someone why their vision is 20/30 or whatever. It just is what it is. I sort of gravitate towards anything orange whether it is food or drink or clothes or whatever"

Earnhardt is also looking forward to teh opportunity to race in Charlotte at what is his home track.

"Being one of the primary sponsors for Hendrick Motorsports, there's a lot of pride going over there and running real well," he said. "You've got all the guys from the shop that are capable of coming over there. There's a lot of pride on the line from all teams' standpoints. We're all right here within 30 miles of Charlotte. To be able to win in your hometown is very, very special."

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