June 17, 2021

Gp Delivers

The excellent automotive artisans

Dale Earnhardt Jr. show off father’s restored vintage race car

For years, Dale Earnhardt Jr. has been working to restore a vintage car that once his late father, Dale Earnhardt Sr., raced in the mid-1980s in the second-tier Xfinity Series (then known as the Busch Grand National Series).

And judging by the videos Junior shared of himself behind the wheel, the car looks pretty great. Good thing, too, because the 46-year-old NASCAR driver turned NBC Sports broadcaster and NASCAR said that the old-school car will hit the track for Darlington Raceway’s throwback weekend in May and lead the pace laps for the Xfinity Series race.

Dale Jr. announced in 2019 that he bought his dad’s black No. 8 Chevrolet Nova, and since then, he’s been intensively restoring it. And thoroughly documenting the process on Twitter.

As Junior explained during a 2019 episode of his podcast, the Dale Jr. Download, he had his eye on this car for a while, but wasn’t sure if it was the real deal. He said bought it at an auction — with some help from Hendrick Motorsports owner Rick Hendrick — for $190,000 and was eventually able to authenticate it, in part thanks to old photos like the one of Earnhardt as a child sitting in the car.

On that same podcast episode, Dale Jr. also said the car was originally a Pontiac Ventura but eventually, “they cut the nose off the car and made it a Nova.” And for about two years, Earnhardt has been working to restore the 1984 car that Dale Sr. won six Xfinity races with.

Recently, Dale Jr. took it out for a ride and posted the videos to his extensive restoration Twitter thread Friday.

This NASCAR season, there are two race weekends planned for Darlington, and the first one, in May, will serve as the track’s traditional throwback weekend.