There could not have been a better night and place to win the Daytona 500 than last night for Dale Earnhardt, Jr. After a six hour rain delay, coupled with tornado warnings and massive crashes racing under the lights was back on late in the evening.
What a history making night. Earnhardt Jr. finally snapped a 55-race losing streak and was finally back on the main stage at Daytona after 10 years. While the night was special for Jr. and his team, the night, or the race weekend as a whole was amazing for the Earnhardt family. Rookie driver Austin Dillon earned a pole position in the No.3 car, the number made famous by Earnhardt Sr.
However with the rain delay came a little confusion for the at home viewers. While Daytona was waiting for storms to pass, viewers of the FOX network watched last year’s Daytona 500 where Jimmie Johnson won the race. This caused a frenzy on social media having fans and viewers all over to send congratulatory tweets to Johnson on his win. While in fact Johnson was watching The Jungle Book with is daughter.
Brad Keselowski, the 2012 Sprint Cup champion, said he thought Earnhardt’s victory was an even bigger story than the return of the No. 3 to NASCAR’s top series for the first time since the death of Dale Earnhardt Sr. in the 2001 Daytona 500.
“There is no shortage of story lines this year,” said Keselowski. “It is just a matter of which one suits your fancy. Dale is a very popular driver. Is he more popular than a number? I would like to think so. I would like to think a person is more popular than a number. These days I suppose you never know. Both are important stories and both would be very rewarding for the sport.”
And while Earnhardt elated his quarter-million Twitter followers after the race in sending his first-ever tweet, Earnhardt himself was clearly the happiest of all.
“I don’t know that I realize how big a deal it is,” he said. “But I know I got a lot of fans that are really happy and really enjoyed what we did tonight and can’t wait to go to work tomorrow to brag to all their buddies around the water cooler. Monday’s going to be a fun day for a lot of people.”
— Dale Earnhardt Jr. (@DaleJr) February 24, 2014
To mimic a statement made by Jeff Gordon last night, “That is a sign that the NASCAR season is going to be a good one.” We honestly hope so, what amazing start to an exciting sport.
Your Jersey Girlfriend,