Being a fan of Dale Earnhardt Jr. certainly comes with many ups and downs. However, over the last few seasons there have been far more downs than ups, but last season Dale Jr. started to turn things around. He has since carried that momentum into the 2012 season and is running well almost every week which is making NASCAR better not just for me but, in my opinion, also as a whole.
Better for Me
For sure Dale Jr. running up front all season long has made watching NASCAR far more enjoyable for me. In fact, his strong run in the 2012 season has prompted me to add yet another live race event to my slate this season. Normally, I only go to two or three races each season, but due to the fact that Dale Jr. currently sits third in the standings I will be getting tickets to the last race of the season, at Homestead, just in case he can pull off an upset and win his first NASCAR Sprint Cup Series title. This has truly been a season that I have paid full attention to and have loved every minute of.
Better for His Haters
Even Dale Earnhardt Jr. haters are likely enjoying NASCAR more with him running better. I know that sounds like it doesn't make any sense, but in all actuality it does. Dale Jr. seems to be one of those drivers that is either loved or hated. Granted, he is loved a lot more, but his haters are very strong critics, as many of my personal NASCAR friends will attest to. But, with Dale Jr. running poorly, what motivation do the haters have to tune in? If he is already running horribly then their point is proven. On the other hand, if he is running well, then they are going to tune in just to see him falter and make a big stink about it when he does.
Case in point was the last race at Bristol, which saw Dale Jr. make a couple mistakes and end up finishing 12th. Not 20 minutes after the race was over several of my Dale Jr. hater friends were texting me and letting me know just how much he messed up. The point is though, they were watching, just like I was.
NASCAR the Real Winner
I think the real winner with Dale Jr. running well is NASCAR. After all, the entity makes no money if people aren't tuning in to watch the races. While I always watch the races no matter how well Dale Jr. is doing, I still enjoy them a lot more, and am much more attentive to them when he is running well. As I suspect I am not the only one, NASCAR is the clear winner when Dale Jr. runs as well as he has been in 2012.
Jimmy Collins has been a loyal fan of NASCAR since he was a child attending races watching Dale Earnhardt run the famous number 3. He still attends numerous races each season and enjoys writing about NASCAR, particularly in regards to Dale Earnhardt as well as Dale Earnhardt Jr.
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