WATCH: Dale Earnhardt Jr Made Dale Sr “Not Just a Proud Owner, But a Proud Pop Too” in an Emotional Speech at the 1998 Busch Series Banquet

Published 11/22/2021, 3:25 PM EST
DARLINGTON, SC – SEPTEMBER 3: Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Dale Earnhardt Sr. pose for a photograph after the Pepsi Southern 500 at the Darlington Raceway on September 3, 2000 in Darlington, South Carolina. (Photo by Craig Jones/Getty Images)


Back in 1998, Dale Earnhardt Jr was slowly coming up the ranks. When the NASCAR season ended, the youngster ended up winning the Busch Grand National Series. At the end of the season banquet, his father Dale Earnhardt Sr gave a speech about his son. Over there, he spoke about how proud he was of his son for winning the championship.

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He said, “What can you say about a driver that is your son. Not just a proud owner, but a proud pop too. I thought about what can I say tonight about him. Really, I can talk about him forever, from him growing up to what he is become. All of a sudden, he was in school. He was a little boy tagging along with me, going fishing. Doing all the wrong things while I went looking.”

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While Dale Sr was speaking, an emotional Dale Jr was looking on and listening to the praise. In all honesty, it would have been the proudest moment of his career. Not many can truly say that a 7-time Cup champion is praising their skill and is proud to be their father.

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What else did Dale Sr say about Dale Earnhardt Jr?

Dale Sr continued, “He’s become a young man. After school, he started dragging race cars and stuff around. Parks up and started messing with the race cars and all of a sudden, he’s pushing for a national championship. I don’t think a father could be any happier to be his dad and his owner, too. Very proud of you son, you did it.

DAYTONA BEACH, FL – FEBRUARY 4: Dale Earnhardt Sr. & Dale Earnhard, Jr. pose together at the raceway in Daytona Beach, Florida. The Earhnardts and Andy Pilgram earned second in the GTS category during the 2001 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona. (Photo by ISC Archives/CQ-Roll Call Group via Getty Images)

Since then, Dale Earnhardt Jr has gone on to win the 1999 Busch Series championship. He has also won the Daytona 500 twice, as well as four straight wins at the Talladega Superspeedway. Although he has never won a Cup Series title, it does not take away from his talent, and 26 career Cup wins is proof of it. Now, he is a fairly successful team owner in the Xfinity Series, courtesy JR Motorsports.

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DIVE DEEPER

How Dale Earnhardt Jr Was Instrumental in Revamping the North Wilkesboro Speedway

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Dhruv George

12313 articles

Dhruv George is a senior Motorsports author for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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