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Richard Childress Racing Will Field A No. 3 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Car With Austin Dillon in 2014

Richard Childress Racing Will Field A No. 3 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Car With Austin Dillon in 2014

by December 12, 2013 0 comments

CONCORD, N.C. :: For the first time since 2001, a Richard Childress Racing No. 3 car will compete in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series.

Austin Dillon has won a NASCAR Nationwide Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series championship with the iconic number, so there was no question about what number he wanted, but his relationship with the No. 3 started when he was just a kid playing stick and ball sports.

“Growing up, sitting on the couch with my grandmother and my mom watching the races and cheering for that number, it’s very special now to think that where I’m at. I don’t probably realize it at the moment how big it is,” Austin Dillon said. “It’s very special. I’m excited to be obtaining a goal and being in the Cup Series.”

Fortune 100 company, Dow Chemicals and General Mills’ Cherrios will be the two primary sponsors on Dillon’s car as he’ll attempt his first full-time season in the series. American Ethanol, Bass Pro Shops, Realtree Outdoors and the University of Northwestern Ohio (UNOH) will team up in 2014 as well.

“The paint schemes are beautiful,” Austin Dillon said. “I think they’re awesome. We got two great companies that we’re running with. I think they both did a great job on choosing how their paint schemes looked, and they’re sexy.”

Gil Martin who’s a 13-year veteran will be on top the pit box calling the shots as Dillon’s crew chief in 2014. Austin Dillon’s teammates will consist of 2011 Brickyard 400 winner, Paul Menard in the No. 27 Menards Chevrolet and 2008 Daytona 500 winner, Ryan Newman in the No. 31 Caterpillar/Quicken Loans/Wix Filters Chevrolet.

“Since I’ve come to RCR in 2000, I’ve worn many hats since I’ve been there and had the opportunity to be in all kinds of different successful situations,” crew chief Gil Martin said. “But I have to say, this is probably the most excited I’ve been since I’ve been there just for the simple reason that I’ve watched Austin since he was probably 8 years old – go karts, bandeleros, legend cars and what an awesome talent. He’s won championships throughout all that, so to get to be a part of watching him where he’s going to go in this Cup Series, it’s a tremendous thing for me.”

However, to place the No. 3 on the side of Dillon’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series car wasn’t as simple as you’d might think. Austin wanted permission from Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kelly Earnhardt and a few others before making the announcement. Richard Childress hopes that the car will reenergize old Dale Earnhardt Sr. fans and educate new fans who join the sport.

“You have to be comfortable with what you’re doing,” Dillon said. “I guess approach it with grace. I had the people’s approval that I felt like I needed to get in the seat with the number. I thought, I’ve been able to run it for four years now and have so many good times with it.”

Richard Childress Racing wanted a family member to drive the No. 3 car, and the timing is just right for Austin Dillon. It’s certainly going to be a sight when the team rolls the No. 3 car out of the hauler at Daytona International Speedway, the place where it was last driven and the place where the legend will live on starting in 2014.

“I’m just looking forward to it,” Dillon said. “I just really love speedway racing – you got to, it’s a fun type of racing. It’s going to be fun, pulling it out there and having some racing going on.”

Photo Credit: Hunter Thomas

Hunter Thomas
Hunter Thomas is a journalist who grew up in Darlington, S.C. His first motorsports-based endeavor was working as the Public Relations Director at Dillon Motor Speedway in Dillon, S.C., and his journalism start came while he was freelancing at his hometown newspaper, the News & Press while in college.

Hunter has been working within the NASCAR industry since 2010, and throughout the years, he has done everything from PR/Marketing for drivers and teams in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, NASCAR XFINITY Series and NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, to working at Rockingham Speedway. As a journalist, Hunter has covered everything from regional short tracks to NASCAR, ARCA Racing Series, World of Outlaws, Red Bull Global Rallycross, NHRA and much more.

Follow Hunter Thomas on Twitter by following, @HunterThomas08

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