Now here's a way to brighten you day!
When Dale Earnhardt Jr. announced his retirement last year, he said he wanted to race in some Xfinity races.
Now, we know which one he has booked.
Junior will race at Richmond, he announced on Twitter and then in a press release on the JR Motorsports website.
Additionally, we could see Dale Jr. on the racetrack in other races, depending on sponsorship. My guess is he has no problem selling what he needs.
Here's the full press release:
MOORESVILLE, N.C. (Jan. 29, 2018) - Dale Earnhardt Jr. is retired from full-time competition as one of NASCAR's most famous and certainly most popular drivers. That does not, however, mean he's done racing.
The 15-time NASCAR Most Popular Driver has at least one race in his future, and that could turn into several more depending on sponsorship, as evidenced by his Tweet above.
Richmond Raceway in Virginia has been a great place for Earnhardt Jr. to race, and his last NASCAR Xfinity Series victory came on the .75-mile oval in 2016. It was also the first for the team owner in one of his own cars, and it was quite the sensation.
In that race, he carried Blessings in a Backpack, one of the charities that The Dale Jr. Foundation avidly supports, on his No. 88 Chevrolet. The result was a donation of more than $150,000, thanks to participation by TDJF and others.
Prior to that, Earnhardt Jr. essentially owned the NXS races he competed in at Richmond. In seven career starts, Earnhardt Jr. has won four times, amassed five top-five and six top-10 finishes. His average finish is a stellar 6.7, and his average start is even better at 5.4.
In his NXS championship seasons of 1998 and 1999, Earnhardt Jr. was money in the Commonwealth. His first race, in the spring of 1998, saw him lead 171 of the 250 laps before finishing second. In the fall, he led a whopping 236 of the 250 laps for his first victory. In the spring race in '99, he broke a rear axle with 49 laps remaining and finished 32nd, his lone finish outside the top 10.
He more than made up for it in the fall, leading the final seven laps to outpace former JRM driver Mark Martin for his second victory in four starts on the racy D-shaped oval.
In 2002, driving a Looney Tunes/Action Performance paint scheme featuring the beloved character Gossamer, Earnhardt Jr. led 190 of the 250 laps on the way to his third victory in five starts.
After 14 seasons away from the series at Richmond, Earnhardt Jr. returned to Victory Lane in 2016, and last fall, he drove to a ninth-place finish.