In 1997 he ran a limited schedule.
In 1998 he won seven races with the first coming at Texas Motor Speedway on April 4, 1998.
He then won Dover Downs, Milwaulkee, California, Indianapolis, Richmond and Gateway International.
He went on to become the 1998 Busch champion.
Jr's very first Busch race was run in 1996 at Myrtle Beach, South Carolina where he finished a respectable fourteenth.
Jr and Mom, Brenda, in 1998
The AC Delco sponsored car Jr drove
for two years after taking over when Steve Park moved up to the Winston Cup Series.
Jr holding championship
1999 brought six more wins for this young gun. He won in June at Dover Downs, then Boston Speedway, Watkins Glen, Gateway International, Michigan Speedway and Richmond International. At the last race all he had to do was start but he wanted to win the race and the championship. However his engine blew but the crowd gave him a huge round of applause when he stood and waved to the crowd. When the race was over, the 99 champion jumped into the arms of his crew!
Jr with Dale and holding his 1999
Busch Championship Trophy
From left to right Tony Eury, Sr, Dale Jr, Dale, and Teresa all so happy with another championship
Jr goes to Hollywood. He appeared on the Donnie and Marie Osmond show on national tv. It was a thrill for him and he said they were both so nice to him and never stopped talking to him--assuming he would be nervous. If he was, he didn't show it!
Jr at Daytona in 1998 taking a tumble. He was out of the race and returned home. He watched Dale Sr win his first ever Daytona 500 from his livingroom.
Jr beside car in Hollywood
Sister Kelly also raced for a time but later became a mom and retired from racing
Jr jumping into arms of crew
Jr and Steve Park who would be his teammate in the Winston talk it over.
Jr jumps for joy on his Superman car. The diecast for this one is a real beauty. He appeared on QVC advertising it in a two hour show
One of the highlights of Jr's 1999 career was racing with Dale Sr in the Iroc Series. As the 1998 Busch Champion he was invited to run in the Iroc. Dale Jr had the experience of a lifetime. It was one of the most thrilling races ever run at Michigan Speedway as the two battled side by side. As they came out of turn four on the last lap, Dale Jr tried to pass on the high side and was ahead briefly. Bumping and banging and rubbing Dale edged Dale Jr. by just .007 seconds to win his tenth career Iroc race.The runner up was Jr's best finish of the 1999 Iroc season. Dale went on to claim his third Iroc title.
Shown here, Dale Jr and Dale in coke hats which they wore when they both raced in Japan. Jr beat Dale by a few positions and he bragged just a little about this on The Donnie and Marie Show when he was their guest.
Shaking Hands in the Blockbuster Deal Signed
With Budweiser While Jr Was in His Freshman Year in the Busch Series
Jr and Dale Share a coke!
Jr, looking into the distance
Jr with early facial hair!!
Jr in car ready to go. Jr still wearing the open face helment and goggles.
Jr's car at DEI, Thanx Carol (this her and kiddies) 2001
Great picture of Jr and Dale in 1998 (thanx Mel)
Jr in jeans, Busch years.
Jr Signs Blockbuster Deal with Busweiser