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Dale Jr. to make announcement Wed.: could this be the big announcement of where Dale Earnhardt Jr. will go and who he will drive for in 2008 and the future? NASCAR Nextel Cup driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. has scheduled a news conference for Wednesday at 11:00a,/et at his JR Motorsports race shop. [This is NOT open to the public] A full transcript will be released shortly after the news conference.(JR Motorsports PR)

UPDATE: must be big....SPEED will interrupt regularly scheduled programming Wednesday morning, June 13 at 10:00am/et in anticipation of a live press conference from JR Motorsports about the future plans of Nextel Cup Series driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. At 11:00am/et, John Roberts will host a special live edition of The SPEED Report, with Bob Dillner on site in Mooresville, N.C. The press conference is expected to last one hour. At 7:00pm/et, SPEED will present a special half-hour edition of The SPEED Report to summarize the day's events.
And XM Radio Sports Nation (XM channel 144) will also air the press conference live.
AND Officials with Gibbs Racing said that the team is not involved in the news conference.(SceneDaily.com)(6-12-2007)
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
UPDATE: Officials with Ginn Racing and Joe Gibbs Racing each said their teams were not involved in the news conference while a spokesperson for Richard Childress Racing said the team owner is out of the country [New Zealand] on a hunting trip and that he is not expected to be back in the country tomorrow. A Hendrick Motorsports spokesman had no comment. A call to Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s spokesman was not immediately returned.(SceneDaily.com)
UPDATE 2: ESPN.com's Marty Smith reports: Dale Earnhardt Jr. on Wednesday will announce his intent to drive the #5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevy in 2008, multiple sources with intimate knowledge of negotiations told ESPN.com Tuesday on condition of anonymity. Hendrick Motorsports declined comment Tuesday, and e-mails and calls sent to Earnhardt's representation were not returned. Kelley Earnhardt Elledge, who has handled contract negotiations for her brother, declined to comment on the report. There was some speculation that the wheels are already in motion to plant Earnhardt in the #5 now driven by Kyle Busch before season's end, but Dale Earnhardt, Inc. president Max Siegel, contacted by phone Tuesday, discounted that scenario, saying Earnhardt would remain in the #8 through season's end. Sources said there are indications that Busch may not finish the year in the #5. Busch is under contract with HMS through the end of next season, and Hendrick had been working to sign the 22-year old driver to an extension. Jeff Dickerson, an attorney for Busch, told ESPN.com that "a lot of things may or may not occur. Out of respect for Hendrick Motorsports, we're not really sure what's going on yet. But we're trying. I don't think anything's changed yet. I can not tell you that Kyle is out of the #5 for 2008." Meanwhile, one potential scenario would be Casey Mears moving to the #5 and Earnhardt moving to the #25 currently being driven by Mears [Budweiser sponsored Hendrick and the #25 for many years]. It is unknown whether sponsor Budweiser will follow Earnhardt to Hendrick
 

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yahoo rumors: jr. to hendricks

yahoo sports is reporting right now things point to jr. going to hendricks. apparently kyle busch has expressed a desire to leave. so it will open up the #5 car, as he will be released from his contract.

also, they report childress is out of the country, and no representative of the gibbs organazation will be present at the news conference.

i would put the articles here, but i don't know how. maybe someone else does.
 

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just read this on jayski.com

UPDATE 3: Being told that indeed, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. will end up at Hendrick Motorsports, taking Kyle Busch's roster spot. As to what happens to Busch, he'll take Junior's place at Dale Earnhardt, Incorporated.(6-12-2007)
 

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david poole of charlotte observer saying all things point to jr. going to hendricks. but, it's wait and see for sure.

with all the divided feelings on earnhardt, jr., gordon, and j. johnson, that i've read over the many months on here, (ghost cautions, nascar prejudice, etc.) i got to wonder how jr. fans feel racing for hendricks and their hated jeff gordon. and how hendricks fans also feel, having an earnhardt on the team. if it actually happens. who throws beer cans at who now?
 

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Would anybody here take Kyle? He is definately a talented driver, but he hasn't seemed to learn that the race is long and you don't have to run "Balls to the Wall" right from lap one....but in his defense, he does like a loose race car, and w/the new tire this year, the adhesion point seems to be lost alot quicker than in the past so maybe it's not all his fault. If he ever figures out that you can wait and run harder late, he will be tough to beat, and with him and Truex Jr. in good equipment, DEI may be on an upswing.
That's if he goes anywhere. I would not be surprised (if his deal is over after this year, or close anyway) that Ryan Newman could go to the DEI car andKyle could go to Penske w/his brother. Ever think of that? Nobody has as far as I can tell. It would hinge on Ryan's contract, or Penske's willingness to let him go, and right now he's coming back around.
 

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fighter, agree with you. busch, needs to be on a hendricks team to get him straight. or else go drive for penske with his brother. can't see busch and truex together at all.
 

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I love it. I wonder how many Dale Jr. fans will hang themselves knowing that their boy will be teammates to Gordon and Johnson. Smart move for Hendrick. Kyle Busch is talented, but too much baggage and wrecked race cars. He'll end up at DEI or Ginn or something.
 

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One of our local radio stations, 104.5, just reported that it is indeed a done deal with Jr. going to Hendrick. They cited a source from the Charlotte Observer newspaper with knowledge of the negotiations. I guess I just can't comprehend it right now. I'll stick with the old believe it when I see it routine. The press conference tomorrow will tell all. Either way I just hope Kyle Busch ends up unemployed. I can't stand him. Of course he will land on his feet somehwere be it DEI or another organization.
 

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kwik said:
david poole of charlotte observer saying all things point to jr. going to hendricks. but, it's wait and see for sure.

with all the divided feelings on earnhardt, jr., gordon, and j. johnson, that i've read over the many months on here, (ghost cautions, nascar prejudice, etc.) i got to wonder how jr. fans feel racing for hendricks and their hated jeff gordon. and how hendricks fans also feel, having an earnhardt on the team. if it actually happens. who throws beer cans at who now?
What will be great, (and that's if NASCAR fans can act like normal human beings) maybe they will quit booing Gordon and quit calling him a ***** and give him the respect he deserves as one of the greatest drivers of all time. With Him, Jr. and Johnson on the same team, maybe the shit will stop, and it will get back to what it's all really about...the racing and the talent that they have and all of this conspiracy bullshit can die, LIKE IT SHOULD. And I might add, the most powerful motorsports team on the planet. Go Jr.!!!!
 

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That's interesting, I agree with you Fighter too. Alot of Jr. fans will def quit liking him I think. Also think of all the paint schemes Jr. will have and diecasts.
 

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Nah, it'll just be the same. Instead of NASCAR favoring Hendrick, it'll be Hendrick favoring Gordon and Johnson when they roll off 8 of 12 wins to begin the season next year and Dale Jr. still hasn't won. Same stuff, different lines.
 

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i wondered the same thing. how many die hard Jr fans will turn on him since he is a major rival? i for one cant blame Jr for going since he is going to a great race team. i know i wouldnt like it all that much if Stewart went over there but at the same time i wouldnt blame him either. with all the talk of Gibbs might be racing Yotas next year, i wont turn on him just because hes not driving a chevy. as far as Jr fans not throwing beer at Gordon......................... lol lol lol. as long as Gordon is racing, Jr fans will continue to throw beer at him.
 

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I think BUD is going with Jr at JR Motorsports and Kelly Earnhardt is going to be the owner, and Hendrick will supply the engines. How bout that prediction.
 

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Earnhardt Jr. heading to Hendrick Motorsports?

Earnhardt Jr. has scheduled a news conference for 11 a.m. Wednesday at his JR Motorsports headquarters in Mooresville to announce his plans. The news conference will be carried live on Speed and on Sirius Satellite Radio’s NASCAR channel.

Sources told the Observer on Tuesday that Earnhardt will join Gordon, Johnson and Casey Mears on the four-team Hendrick roster in 2008.

Kyle Busch, currently the driver of the No. 5 Chevrolets for the team owned by Rick Hendrick, will be released from his contract and free to sign with another team.

When asked whether Busch had either asked for or received a release from his contract, Hendrick Motorsports spokesman Jesse Essex replied, "As a matter of practice, we don't comment on contractual issues." But that was not the case last year, when Hendrick Motorsports confirmed that Brian Vickers had asked for and received a release.

The Observer attempted to contact Busch through Hendrick Motorsports officials on Tuesday, but was told he was testing at the Milwaukee Mile through Wednesday and would not be available for comment until Friday at Michigan International Speedway, the site of the next race.

Today’s announcement comes five weeks after Earnhardt Jr. announced his decision to leave Dale Earnhardt Inc. at the end of the current season.

That May 10 news conference, also held at the JR Motorsports headquarters from which Earnhardt Jr. fields teams in the NASCAR Busch Series and several other developmental series, set off rounds of speculation about the future of the sport’s most popular driver.

“At 32 years of age…it is time for me to compete on a consistent basis and contend for championships now,” Earnhardt Jr. said that day. “What team I drive for next season, I don't know. We'll see what opportunities I have, we'll see who wants to hire me, who is interested for me to drive their race cars, and we'll decide from there.”

Earnhardt Jr. has driven the No. 8 Chevrolet in each of his 269 career starts, said he wanted to remain with Chevrolet.

Those facts centered the discussion of where Earnhardt Jr. might go to Hendrick, Joe Gibbs Racing and Richard Childress Racing, the three Chevrolet teams that have won championships in NASCAR’s top series. Ginn Racing, which buys chassis and engines from Hendrick Motorsports, also expressed an interest in Earnhardt Jr.

But after word of the scheduled news conference came late Tuesday morning, the Observer confirmed that Richard Childress was out of the country on vacation with members of his family. Officials at Joe Gibbs Racing told scenedaily.com that the company would not be involved in a news conference today, and Ginn Racing said the same thing to the Observer.

That leaves Hendrick Motorsports, which has won 10 of this year’s 14 Cup races and has 159 race victories and six championships since it began competition in 1984.

Signing Earnhardt Jr. to join Gordon and Johnson would give Hendrick Motorsports a formidable lineup of driving talent and popularity.

Gordon and Johnson each has four victories this season and have combined for 106 victories – 79 for Gordon and 27 for Johnson – and five titles. Mears got his first career Cup victory last month in the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway.

Earnhardt Jr. has won 17 races. Since he joined the Nextel Cup circuit full-time in 2000, only Gordon (30), Johnson (27) and Tony Stewart (26) have won more races. Earnhardt Jr. has also won the circuit’s most popular driver award for the past four years, each time by landslide margins in voting by fans.

Rick Hendrick has had 2,299 entries in Nextel Cup races. His first race as a car owner came in 1984 with Geoffrey Bodine driving a No. 5 Chevrolet. Bodine got the team its first win in that car that year on April 29 at Martinsville.

Hendrick Motorsports has 27 victories in the No. 5, including four by Busch, its current driver. Terry Labonte won 12 races and the 1996 title in the No. 5, while Bodine won seven races and Ricky Rudd won four races for Hendrick with that number.

Cotton Owens (three), Neil Bonnett (two), Bobby Johns and Morgan Shepherd (one each) have won races in the No. 5.

There are family ties between Earnhardt Jr. and Hendrick, dating back to the car owner’s first forays into stock-car racing. In 1983, the late Dale Earnhardt won the Mello Yello 300 Busch Series race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway in a No. 15 car co-owned by Hendrick and Robert Gee Gee is Earnhardt Jr.’s grandfather.

His daughter, Brenda, was the elder Earnhardt’s second wife and is the mother of Earnhardt Jr. and Kelley Earnhardt Elledge, who also is vice president of JR Motorsports and Earnhardt Jr.’s primary business adviser.
 

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