Nascar

Dale Jr. achieves personal milestone with Phoenix win

AVONDALE, AZ - NOVEMBER 15: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane after winning the rain-shortened NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 15, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)

AVONDALE, AZ - NOVEMBER 15: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet, celebrates in victory lane after winning the rain-shortened NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on November 15, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/NASCAR via Getty Images)

Dale Earnhardt Jr. holds up three fingers after scoring his third win of 2015.

Matt Sullivan NASCAR

Since moving to NASCAR's top series on a full-time basis in 2000, Dale Earnhardt Jr. has won 26 races.

But it wasn't until his victory in Sunday's rain-shortened Quicken Loans Race for Heroes 500 at Phoenix International Raceway that NASCAR's most popular driver could claim the distinction of scoring three or more wins in consecutive seasons.

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Prior to 2014 -- when Earnhardt went to Victory Lane four times -- there had been two seasons when the third-generation driver won more than twice, but those seasons (2001, three wins; 2004, six wins) were not in succession.

Now, if Earnhardt can capture Sunday's season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway, a track where he's never won, he would match his record for wins over a two-year stretch, tying the mark he set over the 2003 and 2004 seasons when he collected eight trophies.

So for those members of Junior Nation still feeling a little glum about Earnhardt not reaching the Championship 4 or the Eliminator 8, there can be at least some solace found in the fact that their guy seems be winning with as much, or at least almost as much, frequency as ever.