Earnhardt History
1983 Season
A 2nd & final season with Bud Moore

1983 Season

Starts 30
Wins 2
Top 5's 9
Top 10's 14
Points Rank 8
Crew Chief:
Car Owner:
Bud Moore
Car Make:
Ford T-Bird
Car No: 15
Sponsor: Wrangler



A recently married Dale Earnhardt returned with Wrangler for a second year with Bud Moore.  Dale's victory in the Rebel 500 at Darlington had been his only win in '82, and he had high hopes for improvement in the coming season.  Moore had spent the previous year trying to rein in his young charger and help him understand that races are won on the last lap, not the early stages of the event.  Dale had responded.  He had nearly won several other races with the lumpy Thunderbirds in 1982, and now that Ford had introduced its new, sleeker Thunderbirds for '83, Earnhardt envisioned a return to the top of the points ladder.

Earnhardt won twice for Moore, but by the final third of the season, Dale was frusterated beyond words with his lack of success in the new Thunderbirds.  The long-awaited Ford engine blocks had finally arrived, but figuring out how to get the most out of the new engine - and making the valve train live in the new blocks - was quite a challenge and would take a little time.   Dale felt that another year spent waiting for the Fords to become competitive on a race-to-race basis was simply too long, and he began looking for a new team to drive for in 1984.  At year's end, he and Wrangler moved back to the Childress effort. Ricky Rudd, who had been driving for Childress in '83, would switch to Bud Moore's team.  Wrangler agreed to stay with Moore as well as go with Earnhardt; it would sponsor two teams for 1984.




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