After completing his qualifying lap at California Speedway, Dale Earnhardt Jr. faced the inevitable media horde and the inevitable questions about what number he’ll have on his car next year when he moves from Dale Earnhardt Inc. to Hendrick Motorsports.
“When we announce the number, it will be the same day we announce the sponsor and that will be at a press conference, not standing on pit road after qualifying,” Earnhardt Jr. said.
Earnhardt Jr. said that announcement was “probably two weeks away,” and added that there are a couple of numbers near the top his list. But he’s not losing sleep over it.
“I don't think there is a reason to make a big deal out of it,” he said.
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“The bigger deal to me is the people that we partner with and the sponsorship that we put together. That is where the main excitement lies for me in the next announcement we make.
“The number, it will be fun to have a new number and to being doing something different. I think the attention that has been placed on it is a little bit over the top. I am more excited on who the sponsor will be and what the car will look like, the color and design wise and what our approach will be as far as marketing that we are going to produce to try and market ourselves with our new partners.”
Earnhardt Jr. also indicated that his current crew chief, Tony Eury Jr., could be going with him to Hendrick.
“We don't have any announcement yet, but Tony Jr. is working in that direction,” Earnhardt Jr. said.