Before the 2001 Daytona 500, Dale Earnhardt had a Bible verse in his car. Here's what it was.
The following is an excerpt from an exclusive Daytona Beach News-Journal story for our subscribers on the death of Dale Earnhardt. For the full story, clickhere.
For seven years, Darrell Waltrip's wife, Stevie Waltrip, would put a Bible verse in Dale Earnhardt's iconic No. 3 Chevrolet.
Waltrip — the 1989 Daytona 500 winner — and Earnhardt had been fierce competitors on the track for years, but had also grown close off the track.
"Him and Stevie were really good friends, too," Waltrip told The News-Journal. "She’d been putting scriptures in his car ever since 1994, when Neil (Bonnett) got killed."
That was no different for the 2001 Daytona 500 — Earnhardt's final race.
Even though the newly retired Waltrip was now in the Fox TV booth instead of the race, Stevie still managed to sneak onto the 500 starting grid and get her Bible verse into Earnhardt's No. 3 minutes before the invocation.
"She was stressing out about it, and I just told her she'd figure it out," Waltrip remembered.
As Earnhardt got into the car, his scripture was waiting for him. It was Proverbs 18:10:
The Lord is like a strong tower, where the righteous can go and be safe.
"It turned out to be exactly what he needed in the car that day," Waltrip said.