Dale Earnhardt Jr. has been reflecting on his 19-year racing career, and with that comes memories both good and bad.
The highlights of his career have been well documented throughout his final season, and as his final race approaches, Dale Jr. revealed the biggest regret of his racing career.
Before he moved to Hendrick Motorsports in 2008, Earnhardt raced for his family’s team at Dale Earnhardt, Inc. His uncle, Tony Sr., was his crew chief through the 2004 season. The duo won six races together in 2004, but Dale Jr. decided after that year that he didn’t want his uncle as his crew chief anymore.
“I regret that,” Earnhardt said via Sporting News. “That’s probably my biggest [regret] in motorsports as a driver, was that decision because it did nothing and it made our relationship a challenge to repair. Like I say, we’d won a lot of races together and he had been a big reason why I even got in the XFINITY car to begin with. He was my biggest supporter and we had won so many races together.
“I don’t know what …. I got confused there a while thinking that I knew better than anyone else what was best for me.”
Earnhardt finished fifth in the points in 2004, but he dropped to 19th in 2005 after moving on from his uncle as crew chief. He also only won one race the following year.
Earnhardt still went on to have a great career, but it sounds like moving on from his uncle still bothers him to an extent even 13 years later.