Earnhardt’s bubble gets burst at Martinsville

RIDGEWAY, VA - APRIL 07:  Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Diet Mountain Dew Chevrolet, and Danica Patrick, driver of the #10 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet, are involved in an incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series STP Gas Booster 500 on April 7, 2013 at Martinsville Speedway in Ridgeway, Virginia.  (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

RIDGEWAY, VA – APRIL 07: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Diet Mountain Dew Chevrolet, and Danica Patrick, driver of the #10 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet, are involved in an incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series STP Gas Booster 500 on April 7, 2013 at Martinsville Speedway in Ridgeway, Virginia. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

A great start to the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup season that had Dale Earnhardt Jr. on top of the point standings came to an end Sunday at Martinsville Speedway. After three top five and two top ten finishes Earnhardt suffered his worst finish of the season coming home 24.

The day started on a high note for Earnhardt. After starting 17, Earnhardt was able to wheel his Hendrick Motorsports Chevy into the top 10. On lap 180 he avoided potential disaster. On a restart after a caution period Earnhardt in tenth checked up to avoid teammate Kasey Kahne. The result set off a melee that involved ten cars.  Earnhardt’s Chevy suffered only minimal damage and the crew was able to make quick repairs.

Earnhardt was able to recover and by lap 308 of the 500 circuits he was inside the top five in fourth. MORE>>>

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