NASCAR: One More Time for Waltrip

NASCAR driver Michael Waltrip has followed his older brother Darrell into racing, winning at Daytona, and into the broadcasting booth. And in a few weeks, he will follow brother Darrell once more…into full retirement as a race car driver.

On January 26 Waltrip announced that the 2017 running of the Daytona 500 – also known as the Great American Race – will be his final trip around the track as a competitor.

Speaking on his final Daytona race Waltrip said, “I have experienced the highest of highs and lowest of lows at the Great American Race. But when you are a NASCAR racer who has the privilege of racing here, you love Daytona no matter what happens. In my 30th and final Daytona 500, I am just going to enjoy every moment and be happy that Aaron’s has given me one more opportunity to hoist the Harley J. Earl trophy.”

Waltrip retired as a full time driver in 2012 when he entered the broadcast booth as a member of the FOX Sports team.

The 53 year old Waltrip has run 783 races in his NASCAR career with four restrictor plate race wins – three in Daytona and one in Talladega – including one of the most bitter sweet wins ever when in 2001 Waltrip was leading the race with Dale Earnhardt running second and car owner Dale Earnhardt Sr blocking for his drivers when Earnhardt Sr hit the outside wall and died on the last lap of the race. Anticipating his car owner joining him in victory lane, Waltrip was celebrating the win unaware that his car owner had lost his life.

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