NASCAR: The Wait Is Over...Dale Earnhardt Jr. Wins One!

Robert SmithContributor IJune 18, 2008

This past Sunday, Dale Earnhardt Jr. made a believer out of himself about the fact that you can save gas with the new car.  Dale used the strategy of cutting his engine off and coasting during cautions. 

There were several times where Dale passed the pace car, turned his engine off and coasted to allow the pace car to pass.  Several drivers after the race questioned why NASCAR didn't black flag Earnhardt Jr. 

While listening to the radio communications during the caution, NASCAR told Dale to stop and at which time Jr. no longer passed the pace car.

Nevertheless, Dale Earnhardt Jr. earned his first points race victory since Richmond in 2006.  Jr. was successful during speedweeks at Daytona, where he won the Shootout and the Duel race.

Jr. has remained strong in the top 12 all season long and is a strong contender for the championship.  Kyle Busch's lead is starting to slip after a last-place finish at Pocono and a not-so-dominating performance at Michigan.

This coming Sunday, the Cup Series will be at the road course in Sonoma.  Juan Pablo Montoya will attempt to repeat his performance last year. 

But will the winner be a road course veteran?  You can expect some teams in the bottom 35 of owner points to use a veteran to try to secure a top 35 spot for New Hampshire next week.