Hendrick Motorsports and Dale Jr. confirmed that Jr. will not be driving the #8 next year, as predicted a few days ago here. Though the #8 number has sentimental value for Jr. (his grandfather raced under this number), changing to a new number will mean a ton of money to Jr., his new team and new sponsor via licensing and “re-branding”. By way of background, the teams actually own the numbers on the car and not the drivers. This is the reason why there have been some discussions between Jr.’s old car owner (DEI) and his new car owner (Hendrick).  Apparently, the folks at DEI were unable to reach a deal to “sell” the number to Hendrick. The #8’s value is associated with Jr. and it will be tough for DEI to try and run the 8 with someone else. We will see…..