Monday, April 7, 2014

Only 13 laps in and Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s day is done at Texas

   Just 13 laps into Monday's rescheduled Duck Commander 500 at Texas Motor Speedway, Sprint Cup Series points leader Dale Earnhardt Jr. saw his race come to an abrupt end after he slid into the frontstretch grass and the slid up into the outside retaining wall. His No. 88 Chevrolet caught fire but Earnhardt was not injured.

   Earnhardt spoke briefly after the incident:

   Q: What happened?
   Earnhardt : "Just didn't see the grass. Didn't know the grass was down there. With the way the A-post is on these cars you can't really see that good to that angle. I just didn't have a good visual of where the apron and the grass was and got down in there pretty good. You can't run through there they way they have these cars on the ground like that. Just a mistake on my part. I just didn't know I was that close to the grass, and made a mistake."

   "I drove the car down there. I didn't know we were that close the grass and was following the No. 43 (Aric Almirola). I thought I was taking a decent line through the dogleg. We were going low around the No. 42 (Kyle Larson) so I was lower than normal and just misjudged it. It tears the car up pretty good when you run through the grass."

   Q: Was wet track a factor?
   Earnhardt: "It was no factor. I just made a mistake."