Over the past couple of NASCAR seasons I've unfortunately seen my favorite driver, Dale Earnhardt Jr., get no luck at all, with the exception of bad luck. However, the 2012 season had been an absolute joy for me, as I'm sure many in Junior Nation would agree, as Dale Jr. has been putting together what could be his career year. But, all that has all suddenly changed as the bad luck that has plagued Dale Jr. for so long seems to have found its way back to him once again.
Bad Luck - Two in a Row
Of course, I am under no grand illusion that a full season of racing will go by without some kind of bad luck happening and I think every driver in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series deals with that each year. However, what is so frustrating in the case of Dale Jr. is that his bad luck is coming at times when he is running well and his car is strong.
His latest string of bad luck started at Pocono, where he led a number of the opening laps. His would-be great finish quickly diminished as his car lost its transmission early on and forced him off the track. He would return for a 32nd place finish. Not one week later while running inside the top ten at Watkins Glen, Dale Jr. overdrove the car and spun out with seven laps to go for a dismal 28th place finish.
First to Fourth in a Spin
Unfortunately, that spin at Watkins Glen cost Dale Earnhardt Jr. more than just a good finish, it also cost him the points lead. Now, he finds himself back in fourth place in the Sprint Cup Championship point standings and is 17 points behind the new points leader Jimmie Johnson.
Get it Out of the Way
With just four more races until the Chase for the Sprint Cup starts, I am hoping that the bad luck that has seemed to find Dale Jr. once again will go away. As a fan, it is very annoying to see good cars and strong performances fall by the wayside, especially two weeks in a row. However, if there is one positive to take from all of this it might be that Dale Jr. is getting his bad luck out of the way now.
Once the Chase starts the last thing I want to see is any bad luck fall Dale Jr.'s way. With only ten races in the Chase, every driver and every fan of NASCAR knows that bad luck can kill any chance at a championship contender lifting the Sprint Cup trophy at the end of the season. While I'm not sure if the bad luck that has found Dale Jr. will stick around, I am certain that he would have had some at some point and it is far better to get it out of the way now, rather than having to deal with it come Chase time.
Jimmy Collins has been a loyal fan of NASCAR since he was a child attending races watching Dale Earnhardt run the famous number 3. He still attends numerous races each season and enjoys writing about NASCAR, particularly in regards to Dale Earnhardt as well as Dale Earnhardt Jr.
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