DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — With the famed No. 3 on his car and memories of the late Dale Earnhardt in his mind, Austin Dillon took the fabled number out of hibernation Sunday and straight to the top at Daytona.
Dillon reawakened the days of "The Intimidator" and proved he can handle the spotlight thrust on his ride in the No. 3, winning the pole for NASCAR's season-opening Daytona 500 next Sunday.
He took the top spot with a lap at 196.019 mph in a car Richard Childress had refused to field at NASCAR's top level since Earnhardt's fatal accident on the last lap of the 2001 race.
But with his 23-year-old grandson ready to move to the Sprint Cup Series,...