The Dale Jr. Download

Dirty Mo Media

NASCAR’s 15-time Most Popular Driver and winner of two Daytona 500s, Dale Earnhardt Jr., hosts his very own podcast, The Dale Jr Download on Dirty Mo Media. Earnhardt and co-host Mike Davis raise the bar with unparalleled perspective, candid commentary, and fascinating, first-person insight into the life of a broadcaster, celebrated racer. read less

Our Editor's Take

On The Dale Jr. Download—Dirty Mo Media podcast, Dale Earnhardt Jr. shares his adventurous life in the auto-racing industry. As the grandson of a NASCAR car builder, Earnhardt spent most of his life on the speedway. And he's got an impressive career to show for it. Now, the “Pied Piper of Daytona” looks back on his career. And oh, does he have some stories to tell of his years on the track!

On the show, Earnhardt talks about his adrenaline-fueled life in the auto-racing industry. The cohost is his right-hand man, Mike Davis. They offer a gripping first-hand account of life, careers, and altercations on the road. Each episode features unique insights and candor. Earnhardt wasn't known for holding back on the racetrack. He brings that same sense of insight and honesty to his podcast.

Listeners can look forward to hearing from some of the industry's greatest figures. But The Dale Jr Download—Dirty Mo Media also gives a voice to some of the most polarizing figures of that time. One such guest is Jeremy Mayfield, whose doping scandal cost him his racing career.

Earnhardt was born into a racing family in North Carolina. With his father and grandfather being active figures on the NASCAR scene, his speedway career began at age 17. Initially competing with his father, he honed his racing skills to compete on his own. That's how he became the celebrated racer the world knows and loves today. And now, his podcast continues this run of success.

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408 - Brian France - The Rise, Fall, and Everything in Between
Nov 15 2022
408 - Brian France - The Rise, Fall, and Everything in Between
On the season finale of the Dale Jr. Download, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and co-host Mike Davis sit down with one of their most highly anticipated guests to date: former NASCAR CEO Brian France. In 2002, RJ Reynolds announced it would be pulling its Winston branding as a title sponsor for the NASCAR Cup series after 30 years. Not long after, Bill France Jr., the CEO who oversaw that era stepped down from his position of power. With the organization at a crossroads, Brian arose to the occasion and helped fill the void of his father’s absence while ushering the premiere stock car division into its modern-day state.  From 2003 to ‘18, many changes took place on Brian’s watch that molded NASCAR racing into the motorsport that we watch today. The Dirty Mo crew and listeners alike were eager to have Brian to the Bojangles Studio hot seat to discuss what he felt was a success and a miss during his tenure at the helm of the organization. His education in running an empire began at an early age while growing up in the shadow of his father Bill Jr. A place in the shadows of giants is something that Dale Jr. and Brian can relate to, and the two recall how their fathers were certainly allies but never close friends. Once of age and eager to work, Brian took a position working at Talladega Superspeedway. He became fascinated with the business side of racing and in the 1990s he went on to manage Tucson Raceway Park and work at NASCAR’s Los Angeles office. His tasks included capitalizing on NASCAR’s flourishing west coast fanbase while strengthening its connection to the entertainment capital of the world, which resulted in NASCAR’s integration into the mainstream television and film industry. After helping to negotiate NASCAR’s first national television package deal in 2001, the stage was set for Brian to try his hand at leading the sanctioning body. Dale compares Brian and Bill Jr.’s leadership styles and what it's like having one strong character making decisions versus an entire committee of voices. Brian says he recognizes that many of the changes NASCAR has gone through over the last two decades may be alienating to longtime fans, but insists that the intention was always to promote growth through progression. He explains that NASCAR leadership often looks into untapped markets and develops strategies to help bring new fans into the fold including races in new markets, its diversity programs, and collaborative efforts with other sports and business entities. In 2004, NASCAR along with its new title sponsor partner Nextel introduced the Chase for Cup playoffs system, which would radically alter the traditional points championship structure. Brian explains that the desire to create “big moments” in points racing inspired the inclusion of cutoff lines and races. They discuss how the Playoffs field was expanded from 10 to now 16 and the events that occurred over the years to influence those decisions. Brian admits that a lot of the structuring came from looking at how other sports leagues officiate their playoff systems and what effects it has on their respective championships. Since Dale was an active competitor during Brian’s time in charge, he was anxious to get his insight on one of the most polarizing developments in the last 20 years: the Car of Tomorrow. Making its debut in 2007, the CoT was intended to increase competition while improving safety initiatives, but it became regarded as an inferior machine by drivers and fans. Brian admits that he viewed the car as a mistake and wishes that he would have gotten more input from the drivers and teams in its manufacturing.  The conversation also touches on the Jeremy Mayfield scandal, the 2013 Regular Season finale at Richmond, Brian’s lack of presence at the races, and his 2018 arrest. Download listeners can expect a candid look at one of motorsports most influential leaders in modern history, as well as insight into the decision-making that shifted NASCAR into a household name. To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: https://www.audacyinc.com/privacy-policy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit https://podcastchoices.com/adchoices
407 - Scott Bloomquist - Aliens Don't Care About Long Hair
Nov 9 2022
407 - Scott Bloomquist - Aliens Don't Care About Long Hair
In short-track racing, one driver’s name has been synonymous with creating headlines and capturing the attention of the motorsports world. On this week’s episode of The Dale Jr. Download, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and co-host Mike Davis sit down with that man: the legendary Scott Bloomquist. After arriving in Eastern Tennessee in the mid-1980s and taking the dirt late model scene by storm, Scott rose to prominence in the early ‘90s and has gone on to be regarded as one of the greatest race drivers of all time.  Dale asks Scott about the moment he realized he had become larger than life, and he references the 1988 running of the premiere dirt late model racing event, Eldora Speedway’s World 100. Scott explains that he had never been to the track before and found it intimidating, and upon learning that there were over 250 other entrants for the race he about decided to head back to Knoxville to compete closer to home. He ultimately was convinced to stay by a Hoosier Tire representative, and in the big showdown, Scott defeated late model standout Jeff Purvis, who was aiming for his fourth win in a row at this event.  Bloomquist is well known for his eccentric style and rockstar-like appearance. After being born in Iowa and spending the beginning of his childhood there, his father Ron decided to leave his electrician trade to pursue becoming a pilot. The career transition brought the family to California, where Scott discovered a love for surfing and fast cars. Another defining quality is Scott’s tendency to rebel, and when his father stated “I will never have no long-haired son”, well, you can guess where this is going. As a result, the image of Scott Bloomquist race fans have known for the last four decades was born, and doesn’t appear to be going anywhere anytime soon. The origin of Scott’s legendary racing career is in part thanks to his father’s interest in trying the craft out himself. After seeing a co-worker race at the local raceway in Corona, Ron bought an asphalt car and got it ready for dirt competition. One attempt was enough, and he quickly realized it wasn’t for him. He then offered Scott the opportunity to get behind the wheel, and the 16-year-old jumped at the chance to go fast. He ran well enough in his maiden voyage that the two decided to pursue the sport further, but when the car Ron built for Scott was destroyed in a crash at Manzanita Speedway, he told Scott he wasn’t spending a penny more. From then on, Scott was independent in his racing efforts. Scott tells the story of how his family arrived in Mooresburg, Tennessee on a plot of land located on the cusp of the Cherokee River. When Ron began looking for property to retire to in the early 1980s, the family originally looked at property in Oregon. But Scott, who was fully immersed in the dirt racing scene by that point, recognized that Oregon’s racing was outdated and suggested Tennessee, where Robert Smawley and his NDRA outfit were operating and paying $10,000 to win. Upon arriving, Scott found success early at Kingsport Speedway and used the momentum to propel himself to the top of the division, where he has gone on to win more marquee events than any other driver in history. However, Scott’s time at the top has not been without controversy and the interview touches on his various legal issues and suspensions over the years. Scott is open on the subject and explains how his appearance and success have led others to assume the worst about him. The infamy that came with the arrests boosted Scott’s reputation and ultimately led to him becoming a colossal figure in the sport. Finally, no interview with Scott Bloomquist would be complete without discussing aliens and extraterrestrial beings. Scott details his neighbor's encounter and even touches on an experience of his own. Download listeners should tune in for an unforgettable episode and a peak into the mind of one of racing’s most iconic figures.  To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: https://www.audacyinc.com/privacy-policy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit https://podcastchoices.com/adchoices
407 - DIRTY AIR - Where To Go From Here? JRM Loses Championship; JGR Loses So Much More
Nov 8 2022
407 - DIRTY AIR - Where To Go From Here? JRM Loses Championship; JGR Loses So Much More
After the conclusion of the NASCAR racing season, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and co-host Mike Davis are once again in the Bojangles Studio for another edition of Dirty Air presented by Filter Time. Dale was fresh off his trip to Phoenix for NASCAR’s Championship weekend, and there was plenty to unpack. JR Motorsports came up short in its bid for the Xfinity Championship against Ty Gibbs and the Joe Gibbs Racing organization, and Dale shares his insights of what unfolded in the race and what could have played out differently. The racing world was rocked Sunday morning by the sudden passing of Ty’s father Coy Gibbs. Dale and Mike discuss the recent perception of Ty due to his on-track incident at Martinsville, and speculate how the racing world will surround Ty in his moment of need. With his future career being one of the most discussed topics in NASCAR, it is hard to imagine how he is dealing with so many life-changing moments at once.  The NBC broadcast crew was also thrown for a loop when Steve Letarte had to have an emergency appendectomy after Saturday’s Xfinity race. Dale explains what was happening behind the scenes to aid Steve and his family, as well as what extra steps he had to take to prepare for Sunday’s Cup race one-man down.  During #AskJr. presented by Xfinity, listeners sent in questions regarding Dale’s dream tracks for the final four NASCAR Playoffs races, his opinions on Ross Chastain and Chase Elliott’s dust-up during the Phoenix race, updates on his car restoration projects, the recent announcement that Pennsboro Speedway is being revived and his plans for the off-season. To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: https://www.audacyinc.com/privacy-policy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit https://podcastchoices.com/adchoices
405 - Marcus Smith - NEW Details About The All-Star Race at North Wilkesboro
Oct 25 2022
405 - Marcus Smith - NEW Details About The All-Star Race at North Wilkesboro
Back in September, the stock car racing world was turned upside down when the announcement was made that the 2023 NASCAR All-Star race would be held at the recently revived North Wilkesboro Speedway. On this week’s episode of The Dale Jr. Download, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and co-host Mike Davis sit down with the man who helped make the decision, CEO and President of Speedway Motorsports Incorporated Marcus Smith. Devotees of The Download will recognize that this marks Smith’s fifth appearance on the show, and his yearly check-in usually provides great insight into some of the upcoming projects in the NASCAR world. Much has changed since Marcus’ last visit in May 2021, most notably the passing of his father Bruton, who was a major contributor to the racing world and founder of SMI. Marcus reflects on the difficult process of coming to terms with his father’s declining health but is thankful that he lived a long life of 95 years. He also explains how his father got his start in car sales by running a used car lot on his mother’s front lawn. Though he was eventually shut down by city officials, his knack for the industry eventually led to him forming Sonic Automotive, the fifth-largest automotive retailer in the country. The interview addresses the rumors surrounding the reconfiguration of Texas Motor Speedway. Dale and Marcus unpack the September Cup race held at the Fort Worth-based track and discuss what can be done to help boost attendance while keeping competitors and teams happy. Marcus explains that with the current grandstand set-up, there are limited changes that can be made to the track’s actual configuration. However, alterations can be made to the speedway’s profile, much like the recent reshaping of Atlanta Motor Speedway. In fact, with the help of iRacing, they’ve been able to model potential changes and test through simulation to see what effect they’d have on the racing product. The process was essential to the work done in Atlanta, and the results found in the trial runs were comparable to the actual Cup races held this season. In addition to the changes made to the racing surface at Atlanta, there have been talks of bringing a casino resort to the grounds in an effort to build up the area similar to that of Kansas Speedway. Marcus explains that in order for the plans to go through, there needs to be an amendment made to the Georgia state constitution that would allow for sports gambling, and encourages listeners and supporters of the speedway to be vocal to their local representatives. Another huge topic of discussion was the status of the Nashville Fairgrounds project. Those following along will remember that Dale and Marcus have been huge proponents in bringing NASCAR Cup racing back to the famed oval. Marcus makes clear that while they have been seemingly stuck in place for a while, progress is being made on the initiative.  A glimmer of hope in bringing relics of NASCAR’s past back to life has been the return of North Wilkesboro Speedway. Dale and Marcus reflect on the huge success of the recent CARS Late Model Stock Car race at the track and fill listeners in on the changes and upgrades being made to the facility in anticipation of next year’s All-Star event. Aside from additional seating being brought in, improvements are being made to the facilities, scoring system, retaining walls, and traffic flow.  The conversation also touches on NASCAR’s ongoing television contract discussions and what it means for the tracks and the Race Team Alliance. Tune in for insight from one of the great minds and innovators in the motorsports industry regarding what it takes to run a speedway and what all parties can do to help the sport grow as a whole.  Check out northwilkesborospeedway.com for updates/details. To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: https://www.audacyinc.com/privacy-policy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit https://podcastchoices.com/adchoices
404 - Erik Jones - Fired by Joe Gibbs Racing; Beating Kyle Busch; Racing After His Father's Passing
Oct 18 2022
404 - Erik Jones - Fired by Joe Gibbs Racing; Beating Kyle Busch; Racing After His Father's Passing
When the dust settled on the 2022 Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway, Dale Earnhardt Jr. got to fulfill a broadcasting bucket list item: declaring that the No. 43 was the winner. On this week’s episode of The Dale Jr. Download, he and co-host Mike Davis sit down with the man who helped make it possible, the Petty GMS driver of the No. 43 NASCAR Cup Series car, Erik Jones. Erik’s start in racing came when his mother read in a magazine about children competing in quarter midgets. Soon after, his father, Dave, bought a car, a book on set-ups, and the Jones family racing operation was off and running. At the age of 12, he graduated into the pure stock class and explains that after his first outing he was told by tech officials not to return due to his on-track aggression.  Erik got his first big break in his racing career when he got the call to shake down Kyle Busch’s late model at the Nashville Fairgrounds. The connection came through spotter Brandon Lines, and even though he had limited seat time in a super late model, he was able to produce impressive lap times at the famed oval. When Erik scored his biggest victory to date later that year in the Snowball Derby, beating out Busch to do so, a lasting impression was made. Not long after that Busch and executives at Toyota Racing were lobbying on behalf of Erik, and the efforts led to an agreement with Joe Gibbs Racing. Once he was sitting in the Kyle Busch Motorsports No. 51 truck, Erik’s meteoric rise through NASCAR’s national series began. He notched his first Truck Series victory in just his fifth attempt and went on to win the series championship in his rookie season. He also made waves in the Xfinity racing pool, winning six times through 2015 and ‘16. Erik explains that since he was having on-track success, he didn’t apply himself as much outside of the race car as he could have. When he arrived on the Cup scene in 2017, the unprecedented grind put a magnifying glass on his lack of preparation. Erik’s transition into the premiere division of stock car racing was made difficult by another factor as well: the loss of his father in 2016. As the racing season began, his father was diagnosed with stage-four melanoma. Erik would fly to and from Michigan while competing full-time in the Xfinity Series to spend as much time with his father as he could. He and Dale relate to the process of having conversations with a parent in their final stage of life and having the opportunity to be completely honest and open with them. Erik explains that competing in the Cup Series was a shared dream for him and his father, and his perception changed in the wake of his passing.  The conversation also covers Erik’s release from Joe Gibbs Racing following the 2020 season. Erik gives great insight into the vulnerability and embarrassment a driver experiences when being let go from a race team. He recalls the painful ordeal of having to tell his family and friends as well as having to finish out the season with a crew that he would be leaving at the end of the year.  Erik channeled positivity through the low point and eventually became excited at the prospect of a new start. That opportunity came in 2021 when he signed on with Petty GMS to take over the famed No. 43 ride. After the challenging process of having to start over, the team has turned around in the 2022 season with Erik scoring a major victory at the Southern 500 and being in contention for wins week in and week out.  Through it all, Erik has been resilient through the ebb and flow of the racing world and it appears that his brightest days still lie ahead.  DIRTY AIR Response to the Ben Kennedy episode Bubba Wallace and Kyle Larson’s dust-up at Vegas Kurt Busch retiring from full-time competition Cole Custer’s future with SHR ASKJR presented by Xfinity Dale’s updated final fours for Cup and Xfinity Innovation fishing tournaments Repaving of Rockingham  New iRacing Championship trophy To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: https://www.audacyinc.com/privacy-policy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit https://podcastchoices.com/adchoices
404 - DIRTY AIR - Bubba Wallace vs. Kyle Larson; Ben Kennedy Aftermath; Dale Jr. Reacts To Kurt Busch Retirement
Oct 17 2022
404 - DIRTY AIR - Bubba Wallace vs. Kyle Larson; Ben Kennedy Aftermath; Dale Jr. Reacts To Kurt Busch Retirement
An early-bird, Dirty Air-segment solo special for Dale Jr. Download listeners eager to hear Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s take on current events, including the drama from Sunday’s South Point 400 NASCAR Cup Series race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. But first, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Mike Davis start Dirty Air by addressing criticism about last week’s interview with Ben Kennedy, NASCAR’s SVP of Strategy & Innovation. The two DJD hosts respond to social media kickback claiming they were too lenient on Kennedy, grandson to the late Bill France Jr. and widely considered to be NASCAR’s next top guy. Did they let him off the hook with softball questions and easy outs? The conversation then pivots to the topic of the hour – the initial mid-race wreck involving Wallace, Larson, and Christopher Bell, as well as the retaliation, shoving match, and post-race interview that ensued. Earnhardt tries to predict what NASCAR’s response will be by drawing from past examples such as Chase Elliott vs. Kyle Busch at Darlington in 2020 and Noah Gragson vs. Sage Karam at Road America earlier this year. That wasn’t the only news from the weekend. Kurt Busch announced he will no longer race full-time in the NASCAR Cup Series as he continues to heal from concussions. This topic was especially personal to Dale Jr., who also had his racing career cut short due to a head injury. What will Kurt do next? Mike Davis has a thought, and Dale Jr. loves the idea. Lastly, on Dirty Air, Earnhardt unpacks the whole saga at Stewart-Haas Racing, where Tony Stewart expressed anger towards NASCAR over the penalties levied against Cole Custer’s No. 41 team, and Gene Haas reportedly made comments to media about Custer’s future. What does this mean for Custer? What about Ryan Preece? Earnhardt weighs in with his usual unfiltered opinion, candor, and honesty. The full episode of The Dale Jr. Download will drop on Tuesday, October 18, complete with Dirty Air presented by Filter Time, Ask Jr presented by Xfinity, and a deep conversation with Erik Jones, driver of the Petty/GMS No. 43, in the guest segment presented by Ally. To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: https://www.audacyinc.com/privacy-policy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit https://podcastchoices.com/adchoices
403 - Are Charter Prices Too High?; Ben Kennedy on the Future of NASCAR
Oct 11 2022
403 - Are Charter Prices Too High?; Ben Kennedy on the Future of NASCAR
As NASCAR gets ready to celebrate its 75th year of existence in 2023, its premiere division the Cup Series will set out on its most versatile schedule to date. On this week’s episode of The Dale Jr. Download, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and co-host Mike Davis sit down with one of the visionaries responsible for the swift transformation the sport of stock car racing has seen over the last few seasons, NASCAR’s Senior VP of Racing Development & Strategy Ben Kennedy. Born and raised in Daytona Beach, Ben is a fourth-generation member of NASCAR’s founding France family, the son of Lesa France Kennedy and great-grandson of Bill France Sr. While he is only 30 years old, he has been around the sport his entire life in many capacities, from working odd jobs at Daytona International to being in the driver’s seat and owning his own race team. His unique insight and experience have allowed him to rapidly rise through the NASCAR executive ranks, originally taking a position as the General Manager of the Trucks Series in 2018. With the incorporation of the Chicago street race and the Clash at the Coliseum, as well as returning to North Wilkesboro and the Bristol dirt race, the stock car racing mainstay has gone leaps and bounds from its original vision in 1948, while keeping its fundamentals in place. Ben explains that much of the decision to hold events like the street race or the Coliseum was based on wanting to connect to city centers where NASCAR has a large fan base while doing something out of the box, original to the sanctioning body itself. During his time with the NASCAR Operations team, Ben learned a lot about NASCAR’s international fanbase and what efforts are being made to help grow it. While the majority of racing circuits overseas are road course configurations, the team began looking into building temporary oval tracks in stadiums or arenas to help display stock car racing in its original form. He explains that this is what put the L.A. Coliseum on their radar as a potential venue to house such a production. He also goes on to talk about the conception of the Chicago street course and how the team settled on Grant Park as a location. The team originally visited Soldier Field as a possible setting for the Clash event. But due to the current configuration of the field, the potential racing surface would be far too small, thus leading to the event being moved to Los Angeles. However, thanks to Grant Park’s ability to facilitate a large number of spectators, as seen with Lollapalooza every year, the focus turned to creating a street course. With the help of iRacing’s scanning system, they were able to bring a realistic render to life and test it with a cast of NASCAR Cup stars last year. Earlier in the interview, the trio discusses what Ben’s life was like growing up in Daytona and his interests before entering the motorsports world. In 2007, Ben tragically lost his father Dr. Bruce Kennedy in a plane crash, and he and Dale were able to bond over the shock of losing a loved one suddenly. Ben first got behind the wheel of a race car at age 14 when a family friend signed him up for a go-kart course held at New Smyrna Speedway. Ben fell in love with the sport immediately and in the years that followed he quickly progressed through the local Central Florida short track divisions into the regional NASCAR ranks, before finally arriving in the Trucks Series. After having a breakout season in 2014 and making his Xfinity Series debut a couple of seasons later, Ben retired from racing at the end of the 2017 season to begin his journey through the business side of the organization. DIRTY AIR Dale’s birthday activities Was the caution for the sign the right call? RTA and NASCAR discussions hit a wall Buster’s Trip to Victory Lane ASKJR presented by Xfinity Birthday memories Can iRacing bring a former track to life? Another OEM entering NASCAR Favorite childhood vacations To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: https://www.audacyinc.com/privacy-policy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit https://podcastchoices.com/adchoices