WATCH: Dale Earnhardt Jr Turns in His First Laps at the North Wilkesboro Speedway

Published 06/24/2022, 5:45 AM EDT
CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA – JANUARY 21: NASCAR Hall of Fame inductee Dale Earnhardt Jr. speaks during the 2021 NASCAR Hall of Fame Induction ceremony at NASCAR Hall of Fame on January 21, 2022 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Earlier this year, news broke that the North Wilkesboro Speedway was undergoing a massive revamp. This was done in the hope that the track will be used for racing once again. Apparently, one of the principal architects behind this idea was none other than Dale Earnhardt Jr. There were reports that racing could be back as early as August, and now it seems that the track is sort of ready.

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Speaking of Dale Jr, he got a chance to break the track in and give it its first taste of racing. Along for the ride were Josh Berry and Carson Kvapil and they were all sharing a Late Model car. Speaking afterward, he said, “It’s fun, man. The place looks great, surface is smooth, no major issues with the track. Lot of work going on around here and they’re trying to get this place ready to go. Tons of volunteers, just a big community effort.”

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What next for Dale Earnhardt Jr and the North Wilkesboro Speedway?

According to reports, the track is expected to host a multi-week grassroots event. Later on in the year, the track will be transformed into a dirt track. All in all, there is an exciting future in store for the North Wilkesboro Speedway. Dale Jr, Berry, and Kvapil were quite thrilled to race at the iconic track and many fans have missed it.

DAYTONA BEACH, FL – FEBRUARY 19: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the #88 Nationwide Chevrolet, stands on the grid during qualifying for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series 59th Annual DAYTONA 500 at Daytona International Speedway on February 19, 2017 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

Admittedly, it is a bit of a long shot to expect NASCAR to return to the revamped track. The last time the sport raced there was in 1996, almost 26 years ago. However, the renovations mean that efforts are being made to restore it to its former glory. Initially, Dale Earnhardt Jr wanted it restored for the purposes of cleaning it up for iRacing. However, one thing soon led to another and we are where we are today, and Dale Jr isn’t complaining about the results.

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WATCH STORY: “A Life Dedicated to Building Our Sport” – From Jimmie Johnson to Chase Elliott, NASCAR Community Pays Tribute to Hall of Famer Dale Earnhardt Jr.

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Dhruv George

13091 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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