Dale Earnhardt Jr. experienced a lengthy NASCAR career that landed him in the Hall of Fame. Earnhardt Jr.’s time on the track featured many memorable moments. Despite his unwavering passion for racing, the two-time Daytona 500 winner quickly found peaceful tranquility in retirement due to one reason.
Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s NASCAR career
Dale Earnhardt Jr. began his NASCAR career with a blazing start, winning back-to-back Xfinity Series championships.
Earnhardt Jr. followed it by becoming a full-time Cup Series driver, where he raced for nearly two decades. He won 26 Cup Series races, including the Daytona 500 twice.
Dale Jr. finished in the top 10 in the points standings seven times, including placing in the top five in four instances. His longevity and success behind the wheel helped earn him a 2020 induction into the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
Earnhardt Jr.’s journey on the track led him to retire after the 2017 season, which he quickly realized why he was ready to step away.
Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s life-changing realization helps him enjoy NASCAR retirement
It was a move that brought monumental change to his life that he at first struggled to move through that choice.
However, he quickly realized the mental relief it brought him as he voiced in February 2018 to The Daytona Beach News-Journal.
“I walked around every day of my life with a thousand pounds on my shoulders that was Sunday,” Earnhardt Jr. said. “What was going to happen, how was I going to run, and I think every driver does that. Now that that’s off my shoulders and I don’t have to worry about that anymore, everything in my life is so much more enjoyable.”
Throughout his entire racing career, Earnhardt Jr. had to walk in the massive shadow of Dale Earnhardt Sr. He faced tremendous expectations due to being the son of one of the greatest drivers in NASCAR history.
That alone made every race that much more pressure-filled as all eyes were always on him. It’s something that he embraced, but it became a tiresome burden that weighed on him throughout his time on the track.
Earnhardt Jr. may have experienced anywhere near the type of success his dad had, but he had a respectable career that earned him a Hall of Fame induction. He can now move forward comfortably in retirement and stay around the sport he loves.
NASCAR connection remains strong
Dale Earnhardt Jr. is enjoying his life in retirement that has come with some exciting developments.
Besides the thrilling experience of having his second child, Earnhardt Jr. has kept himself heavily involved with NASCAR. He maintains his co-ownership of JR Motorsports while venturing out into other avenues.
The 46-year-old conducts The Dale Jr. Download, a highly popular weekly podcast where he frequently interviews guests associated with NASCAR. Meanwhile, he has picked up broadcast duties with NBC Sports covering NASCAR.
The increased time he has from his retirement from racing has also allowed him to explore more ways of acquiring items from his dad’s legendary career. Earnhardt Jr. managed to purchase his father’s 1984 Chevy Nova.
Earnhardt Jr. has fully restored the vehicle, which he will drive as the pace car for an Xfinity race at Darlington Raceway in May. Although he still has a tremendous desire to get behind the wheel, the two-time Daytona 500 winner has found his comfort zone off the track.