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The ``Wrangler Jean Machine'' is Back!

DARLINGTON, S.C. -- Dale Earnhardt Jr., Martin Truex Jr. and the Wrangler(R) Brand Revive Retro Car's Glory Days

It's true: retro is in vogue. From the catwalk to the silver screen to the racetrack, American favorites from yesteryear are making a comeback in a big way, albeit with slight alterations. For example, this Saturday at the NASCAR Busch Series race in Darlington, South Carolina, the Wrangler(R) brand will unveil a new take on the Wrangler(R) Jean Machine, the original yellow and blue racecar driven by Dale Earnhardt between 1981 and 1987. His son, Dale Earnhardt, Jr., hand-picked the retro paint scheme for the car with Martin Truex, Jr. (of Earnhardt-owned Chance 2 Motorsports) behind the wheel.

Truex will drive the car, which will sport a circa 1981 paint scheme, and wear the retro Wrangler(R) stripe uniform and will be accompanied by crew members decked out in yellow and blue Wrangler(R) throw-back hats.

"The image of Dale Earnhardt at the wheel of the classic yellow and blue Wrangler(R) Jean Machine evokes emotion across generations because it was one of the truly iconic cars in the long history of NASCAR," said Craig Errington, director of marketing for the Wrangler(R) brand. "That partnership made many memorable trips to Victory Lane throughout the 1980's." NASCAR fans know the Wrangler(R) jeans-Earnhardt relationship well, and the reincarnation of the distinguished car will help connect the new generation of the Wrangler(R) brand with the new generation of racing and the Earnhardt family.

"Darlington has 50 years of history and tradition in NASCAR and this paint scheme represents the history and tradition of the Earnhardts," said Dale Earnhardt, Jr. "My dad had a great association with Wrangler(R) jeans and I'm proud of my association with them as well. Dad won two championships with the Wrangler(R) car and this weekend is a great time for Martin to bring the Wrangler(R) yellow and blue to another championship."

Of course, Martin Truex, Jr. is pleased himself. "It is truly an honor to be driving the Wrangler(R) car with the retro paint scheme honoring Dale Earnhardt this weekend. Just to have the opportunity to win my first championship with this paint scheme is beyond anything any driver could ever dream of. I would like to thank Teresa, Dale Jr. and the Wrangler Jeans Co. (TM) brand for making this possible. I just hope the history of Wrangler(R) brand and NASCAR championships repeats itself this weekend."

Dale Earnhardt, Jr. of Chance 2 Motorsports, along with his stepmother (and co-owner) Teresa Earnhardt, is thrilled to reinvent this piece of history as a tribute to his late father. "My work with Wrangler(R) jeans this year has been a lot of fun, and it's going to be great to see that yellow and blue car running around the track," said Earnhardt Jr. "I think my father would have been proud to see us working together again. I was a kid running around in Wrangler(R) jeans when they were working with Dad in the past."

The Wrangler(R) brand signed a multi-year deal with Earnhardt Jr. and Dale Earnhardt, Inc. in 2004; Earnhardt, Jr. himself helped design the new line of Wrangler Jeans Co. (TM) Premium 8 Straight Leg jeans. As part of the renewed Wrangler(R) brand-Earnhardt relationship, the Chance 2 Motorsports #8 team, running in the Busch Series has utilized Wrangler(R) paint schemes twice this year. Truex, Jr. currently leads the Busch Series points race. With a strong finish at Darlington, he could clinch the 2004 Season Championship.

The Wrangler Jeans Co. (TM) product line reigns as the official jeans of Dale Earnhardt Jr. and the #8 Dale Earnhardt Inc. racing team.

For more information, images or interview requests please contact Shannon McCabe at 919.277.1194 or smccabe@fwv-us.com.

About the Company

VF Corporation is a leader in branded apparel including jeanswear, intimate apparel, sportswear, outdoor products and workwear. Its principal brands include Lee(R), Wrangler(R), Riders(R), Rustler(R), Vanity Fair(R), Vassarette(R), Bestform(R), Lily of France(R), Nautica(R), Earl Jean(R), John Varvatos(R), JanSport(R), Eastpak(R), The North Face(R), Vans(R), Napapijri(R), Kipling(R), Lee Sport(R) and Red Kap(R).

VF Corporation's press releases, annual report and other information can be accessed through the Company's home page, www.vfc.com.
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Nov 11, 2004
Words:735
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