Having made a switch to Hendrick Motorsports prior to the 2008 season, Dale Jr. started his maiden voyage with the No. 88 Amp Energy/National Guard with non-points victories in the Budweiser Shootout and Gatorade Duel 150 at Daytona. But it wasn't until June that he scored his first points victory under the Hendrick Motorsports banner. Fuel conservation was key, as the team elected for a two-tire stop on lap 146 of 200 and was calculated as six laps short from the finish. Aided by the slow pace of a lap-151 caution, Earnhardt continued saving fuel and never hit pit road. He took the lead on lap 196, but a green-white-checkered finish prolonged the race by three laps. After taking the white flag with full power, a wreck behind him caused the race to end under yellow. Junior nursed his Chevrolet to the checkered flag to earn his first win at Michigan.