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Published:April 17th, 2007 08:47 EST
NASCAR Buzz: Junior Drives The #5, Stewart Retiring?

NASCAR Buzz: Junior Drives The #5, Stewart Retiring?

By Brett Baldeck

The major story among NASCAR fans after last Sunday`s Nextel Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway was not The major story among NASCAR fans after last Sunday`s Nextel Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway was not Jeff Burton winning, but Dale Earnhardt Jr. driving the #5 car for the last ten laps of the race.The major story among NASCAR fans after last Sunday`s Nextel Cup Series race at Texas Motor Speedway was not Jeff Burton winning, but Dale Earnhardt Jr. driving the #5 car for the last ten laps of the race.  winning, but Dale Earnhardt Jr. driving the #5 car for the last ten laps of the race. 

The #5 Kellogg`s Chevrolet is normally driven by Kyle Busch, but after being involved in a wreck late in the race, Kyle Busch went missing. It is assumed that he left the racetrack. What is also unusual about this situation is Kyle Busch was involved in the wreck with Dale Earnhardt Jr., which took Junior out of the race. The #8 driven by Earnhardt Jr. had engine trouble and could not be fixed to go back out and compete. Junior was then asked to make some laps in the #5 car, since Kyle Busch was nowhere to be found. Junior then agreed to take a few laps to help the team out.

After the race, this raised questions as to if Dale Earnhardt Jr. will be joining Hendrick Motorsports? The current contract Earnhardt Jr. has with Dale Earnhardt Inc. will expire at the end of this season. If a new contract is not signed, Junior will become a free agent. However, Earnhardt Jr. has denied that he will be joining Hendrick Motorsports. Most assume that he will re-sign with Dale Earnhardt Inc.

The other hot topic coming out of Texas Motor Speedway was the comments Tony Stewart made to the SPEED Channel. Stewart said he is ready to pack it up and quote retire ". This comes after Stewart was involved in an incident with rookie Juan Pablo Montoya during the race. Stewart also received some blame for causing the late race wreck between Kyle Busch and Dale Earnhardt Jr.  The question that many have for Tony Stewart is if he was serious about retiring. On the other hand, was this just a comment made in the heat of the moment? 

The NASCAR world sure has a lot to buzz about before next weekend`s race at Phoenix International Raceway.