Daytona Preseason Thunder: Q&A with Dale Earnhardt Jr.

AVONDALE, AZ - NOVEMBER 09 2013:  Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 National Guard Chevrolet, prepares to drive during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AdvoCare 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2013 in Avondale, Arizona.  (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
AVONDALE, AZ – NOVEMBER 09 2013: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 National Guard Chevrolet, prepares to drive during practice for the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series AdvoCare 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 9, 2013 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

Dale Earnhardt Jr.,without a doubt the most popular driver in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series went winless in 2013. However, he was competitive and finished the season fifth in the final Sprint Cup standings. Like many teams Earnhardt and his Hendrick Motorsports team came to Daytona International Speedway looking forward to a new season and a new opportunity to win races and much more. Earnhardt  though was thrown a bit a wrench, pun intended, when his crew chief Steve Letarte announced this week that the 2014 season will be his last as a crew chief; he will head to the TV booth with NBC Sports in 2015 joining former driver Jeff Burton.

Earnhardt said he was surprised by the decision and he talked about more during his first media session of 2014 Friday at Daytona International Speedway. Below is the transcript from that session. MORE>>>

About Greg Engle 7420 Articles
Greg is a published award winning sportswriter who spent 23 years combined active and active reserve military service, much of that in and around the Special Operations community. Greg is the author of "The Nuts and Bolts of NASCAR: The Definitive Viewers' Guide to Big-Time Stock Car Auto Racing" and has been published in major publications across the country including the Los Angeles Times, the Cleveland Plain Dealer and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He was also a contributor to Chicken Soup for the NASCAR Soul, published in 2010, and the Christmas edition in 2016. He wrote as the NASCAR, Formula 1, Auto Reviews and National Veterans Affairs Examiner for Examiner.com and has appeared on Fox News. He holds a BS degree in communications, a Masters degree in psychology and is currently a PhD candidate majoring in psychology. He is currently the weekend Motorsports Editor for Autoweek.