The Earnhardt Connection - News

Earnhardt Shows Silly Side on Letterman
The Earnhardt Connection
New York, New York (February 17, 1998)

Finally, the Daytona 500 is a joking matter to Dale Earnhardt.

For 19 years, he had nothing to laugh about after "The Great American Race." But today, coming off of his victory Sunday, Dale Earnhardt took some time to joke about it on CBS-TV's "Late Night With David Letterman."

If you wanted to see Earnhardt discussing the race, this wasn't the show to watch. That followed on "Olympic Late Night," also on CBS, where Dale was asked the usual questions. "Eight in '98 is our goal," he said. The interviewer mentioned Geoff Bodine's bobsled team and asked if Earnhardt had ever been intrigued about that. "Well, anything with speed is intriguing; but I'm comfortable in my car. To get on snow and go that fast - I don't know about that," he laughed.

On "Late Night," Earnhardt never sat down for an interview with Letterman, an avid race fan. Instead, he was introduced to read the Top Ten list - "Top ten reasons it took me 20 years to win the Daytona 500." Maybe Earnhardt has a future as a stand-up comedian, so smooth was his delivery. He was clearly enjoying himself.

Earnhardt will appear on NBC-TV's "Tonight Show" with Jay Leno on Wednesday, February 18.

Without further ado, here is the Top Ten list:

Dale Earnhardt's Top Ten Reasons It Took Me 20 Years To Win The Daytona 500

10. It took me 19 years to realize I had the emergency brake on.

9. Finally rotated and balanced my moustache.

8. Quit training with the Canadian snowboarding team.

7. Stopped letting my 300 pound cousin, Ricky, ride shotgun.

6. New strategy: pretended I'm Dave driving home on the Merritt Parkway.

5. Who cares if it took me 20 years? At least my name's not Dick Trickle.

4. Just figured out, if you mash the gas pedal all the way down, the car takes off like a son of a b****.

3. My new pit crew - The Spice Girls.

2. This year, whenever I'd pass somebody, I'd give 'em the finger.

1. My secret to success: one can of motor oil in my engine, one can of motor oil in my pants.