When the green flag drops on the 2014 Daytona 500, the iconic number 3 makes its return to Sprint Cup Racing after a 13 year absence. Richard Childress Racing owns the #3, and it hasn't been on a car in Nascar's Sprint Cup Series since Dale Earnhardt's fatal crash at Daytona in 2001.

Earnhardt rode the #3 to victory in 67 races, including the 1998 "500," and won six championships with it. Rookie Austin Dillon was 7 years old when he met Earnhardt after that victory. He'll be on the pole Sunday. Dillon has used the #3 in the Nascar Truck Series since 2009, winning the championship in 2011.

I have a close friend whose spare room is a shrine to the late "intimidator." He has trading cards, die cast models and other items too numerous to mention. If he sold it all, he could probably retire. I have a funny feeling the collection is about to grow. By the way, my friend invited me over to watch the race.