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California Dream-Rusty Wallace Wins On His Friend’s Birthday

There is no question that the 2001 NASCAR Cup season was a difficult one for everyone. The death of Dale Earnhardt overshadowed the activities at the track each week. On the third lap of each race, the fans held up three fingers, honoring their fallen hero. The announcers went silent, not speaking a word during the same lap. The loss of the icon was constantly on the minds of the drivers, crews, and fans. Quite possibly the most difficult day of the year came when the series made at that time its lone trip to the California Speedway. The setting was the NAPA Auto Parts 500, but what made the race tough was the day it was raced. It was April 29, what would have been Earnhardt's 50th birthday. The driver that took it the hardest, other than E...

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