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.”
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,
We have to be honest, we can never get enough of Deion Sanders. Whether it’s watching him as a sports analyst on the NFL Network, or coaching the NFL Pro Bowl, or even in commercials as Leon Sandcastle, Deion Sanders continues to give us that little extra that we can’t live without.
In his new reality show on OWN premiering March 1st, Deion’s Family Playbook, takes a look at the ups and of being Deion Sanders, his kids, building his charter school in Dallas and his love life with long-distance girlfriend, Tracey Edmonds.
Here’s a sneak peek of Deion’s Family Playbook…
I have to say that I am looking forward to watching the ups and down of Deion, Tracey and his kids. Check back after the premiere to see what all of your fellow Jersey Girlfriends have to say about the new show.
Your Jersey Girlfriend,
One week before the start of another highly anticipated NASCAR season, Danica Patrick is responding to some harsh criticism from racing legend, Richard Petty, after saying that the only way Patrick could win is “only if everyone else stayed home” in the Sprint Cup Series.
In Patrick’s defense she responded by saying “People have said things in the past, they’re going to say things in the future,” Patrick said Thursday morning during Daytona 500 Media Day at Daytona International Speedway. “I still say the same thing: Everyone’s entitled to their own opinion. People will judge what he said, whether they judge it well or not, and I’m just not going to (judge).”
“The people that matter the most to me are my team, my sponsors and those little 3-year-old kids that run up to you and want a great big hug and say they want to grow up to be like you. That’s the stuff I really focus on.”
“More than anything, I love the conversation it creates,” she said. “Across the board, it makes sports interesting. It makes life interesting when people have different perspectives. That’s fine with me. … It really just doesn’t matter. It’s interesting conversation. I’m fortunate I’m in it.”
This will be the second season where Patrick will focus all of attention on NASCAR, never really finishing the way that she hoped for.
Don’t forget to catch the start of the NASCAR season at the Daytona 500 on Fox on February 23rd at 12 noon ET.
Your Jersey Girl Sports,
This Sunday will not only mark the end of the football season, but could this Sunday also be the end of Pam Oliver on FOX? I know it sounds crazy especially only after a couple of weeks ago social media was on fire discussing Oliver’s un-approving look on the national sports platform, but to date, FOX has not renewed Oliver’s contract.
Oliver has spent the past 19 years with FOX Sports, and 12 of those have been spent sideline reporting with the NFL on Fox’s #1 team of analysts Joe Buck and Troy Aikman. To Oliver this season has been a little different. First , who could forget the concussion that Oliver received while standing on the sideline when a football hit her in the head. Then came backlash after she made a couple of “inappropriate” remarks during a breakfast reception back in October. Finally, a couple of weeks ago when Oliver showed up on national television during the NFC Championship game looking dissolved and not ‘put together’, social media critics went in on Oliver for looking like a disgrace.
Now before you jump the gun, no one is saying that Oliver won’t be around next season. She said she fully expects to have a “nice” negotiation, and like the true professional that she is, her focus lies solely on Sunday night’s game.
“Look, it (that Sunday could be her last game for Fox) has entered my mind. I’m a realist,” she said. “My husband cautioned me, admonished me really, not to treat this as a farewell tour.
“I got this flood of emotions and stormed off the field like I just lost the game. What if I’m never there as a reporter again?” she asked. “I would be snapping pictures everywhere if I felt like (this season) was the end. I think that’s a dangerous way to do a season. You won’t see me looking over my shoulder. I get a say in this as well.”
But the there is another thought to consider. Has FOX Sports been gearing up to let go of Oliver after bringing in the former ESPN darling, Erin Andrews?I have to say after coming to FOX, Andrews has been everywhere from the college football sidelines to NASCAR races to sharing post-game interviewing duties with Oliver during the recent NFC Championship. Don’t forget, that was Erin Andrews’ mic that Seattle’s Richard Sherman was screaming into.
“All this stuff comes with the territory. She (Andrews) is a high-profile person. A lot of attention is paid because people are curious about her,” Oliver said. “They want to start this competition. And all of a sudden I’m answering questions walking through airports. Things like: ‘Are you being pushed out?’ Or, ‘What’s going on?’ Or, ‘What’s the speculation?’
“Well, there’s plenty of speculation,” Oliver said. “But until somebody comes to me and says, ‘Thank you, you’ve had a nice run,’ it’s my job.”
During the emotional interview with Richard Sherman, Oliver had this to say about the debacle.
“I was listening in my ear and I’m thinking, ‘Oh boy, he’s controlling the interview,” she said. “I always felt that when you get a player immediately after a game, you factor in that they are really emotional. I’m not saying she did anything wrong, but in a situation like that you (should) quickly turn the interview into let’s get back to your team winning the game. But I just feel you should have another question in your back pocket (to move the interview along).”
Who knows what’s next for Oliver, it could be 19 more years at FOX Sports or moving on to do more sports’ feature stories somewhere like HBO’s Real Sports. While I don’t know her personally, I know that she will be somewhere asking the hard hitting questions that people can’t seem to not answer. As a sports journalist and a die-heart football fan, I couldn’t picture my Sunday’s without hearing and seeing Pam Oliver on the sidelines, and I’m sure her FOX Sports family feels the same way.
“We’re so connected. We know each other. We laugh at each other,” she said “It’s a family.”
Your Jersey Girlfriend,
With record highs at this year’s Australian Open being in the 101 to 104 degree range, many spectators and players are really feeling the heat. But, tennis’ No. 1, Serena Williams is bringing a different type of heat, this time with her fashion.
Williams is never one to disappoint with her fashion trends on or off the court, but in 104 degree weather Williams rocked a cool Nike pink blazer with a pink and black polka dot tennis dress to match.
Williams said to ESPN that she’s trained her entire life in Florida for conditions just like these.
”I just try to hit a bunch of aces and a bunch of winners — that’s all you can do because it’s too hot to get into long rallies,” she said.
One would think with the high temps Williams would be wearing something a little cooler, not this fashionista. Williams wants to let everyone know that no matter what the temperature, she would be there to take care of business.