Mighty rivers start as little drops coming together.  I remember the days, nearly 40 years ago, when Rick Hendrick was on the verge of shutting down his racing operation (called All-Star Racing) and abandoning his dream of owning a race team.

Hendrick had enlisted Geoffrey Bodine as his driver and the wily, veteran crew chief Harry Hyde.  They were working out of Hyde’s shop.  It was a relatively small one on a quiet piece of land that was hidden away in the woods about a mile from Charlotte Motor Speedway.

After crashing out at Darlington in the 7th race of the year, Hendrick was about to give in and shut the operation down.  Then Bodine won Martinsville.

He ended up with three wins that year.

Two years later, Hendrick had two cars running full-time and 9 wins.

Now, as they’ve become the winningest organization in Cup history, with 13 championships to boot, it’s amazing to think how close Rick Hendrick was to shutting things down.

It shouldn’t be a surprise that he has weathered a 2 ½ year drought only to emerge better than before.

And, that piece of land Harry Hyde had tucked away; it’s now the site of the massive Hendrick Motorsports complex.