It's been a great run - it's been a fun job driving a car only having to remember to keep turning left.  But at the end of this NASCAR season Dale Earnhardt, Jr has said he's retiring.

Known simply as "Jr", he is the son of Dale, Sr., killed on the track in 2001 and the grandson of Ralph Earnhardt.  Jr might be the most popular driver of all time having won the Most Popular Driver Award some 14 consecutive times.

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Jr told the NY Times: “I do feel like this is a new chapter, for whatever reason,” Earnhardt said before the new season started this year. “I don’t have a vision for what’s going to happen. I don’t know how to explain it, but it feels like a new me.”

Though he never won a 'series' title, in 18 full seasons at the top level, Jr won 26 races including two Daytona 500 races.  While his dad was killed at the age of 49, Dale, Jr is retiring at the youthful age of 42.

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Whatever the next chapter brings, a newlywed - he got married in December to Amy Reimann, we wish Dale Earnhardt, Jr good luck and thank him for the memories.