#2 The 2001 Coke Zero 400
It all happened a little too perfectly.
In fact, it was only months after Dale Earnhardt had hit the wall straight on at over 180 miles per hour and while the mood was somber for most of the weekend’s festivities for The Pepsi 400, the mood became absolutely electric when Dale Earnhardt Jr came from eighth to first to win for the first time at Daytona. The most was capped off with Michael Waltrip and Dale Jr celebrating together on top of their cars after having dominated at Daytona that year.
With that being said, there are a few key calls during the race that makes some fans believe that it was staged to happen that way. In fact, some believe that NASCAR was intentionally trying to reset up Dale Earnhardt’s victory in 2000 at Talladega, but this time have Dale Earnhardt Jr take the flag. Not only was the moment reminiscent of what his father did last year, it was also believed to be a sign that NASCAR wanted to focus on Dale Jr as the future.
That’s where most of this particular theory comes from and while its pretty hard to prove that the race was fixed in anyway, or even if the fix was due Dale Earnhardt wanting his son to take the spotlight, it is worth noting that there were a few questionable calls during the end of the race that may have helped Jr win.