CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Regan Smith is finalizing a deal to drive
the Number 01 car for Dale Earnhardt Incorporated next season. DEI
acquired the Number 01 in last month's merger with Ginn Racing.
The 23-year-old Smith has verbally agreed to a one-year contract
that includes a team option for two more seasons. The deal is
expected to be announced next weekend at Richmond International
Raceway, where DEI is planning to reveal its entire 2008 lineup.
Smith started the year splitting the Number 01 ride with Mark
Martin. But a week before Bobby Ginn sold his team to DEI, he
shuffled his lineup and gave Smith his own full-time Nextel Cup
ride while signing Aric Almirola to split the rest of the season
Once the two teams merged, Smith's ride went away and he was
left without a car to drive in the Cup Series. He's raced just
three times since the merger.
In six career Cup starts, Smith's highest finish was 24th at
Talladega. He has six top-10 finishes in 102 Busch Series starts,
and one top 10 in 14 Truck Series events.