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Kyle Larson addresses Indy 500 hopes, $800 Target visit and gives dad advice in Twitter Q&A

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Somewhere in the U.S. on Monday, Kyle Larson was bored while travelling.

The Chip Ganassi Racing driver, fresh off his win at Michigan on Sunday, decided the solution to this problem was an impromptu Q&A session on Twitter.

Larson took questions for an hour about his past, future and flossing habits (they don’t exist).

Here’s some of the best answers from the now three-time Cup winner.

One of the most frequently asked questions around Larson is will he ever compete in the Indianapolis 500?

Larson seems pretty sure it’ll happen at some point.

Larson was asked what his dream track to build would be if money wasn’t an option.

The day after Joey Logano announced he and his wife were expecting their first child, the Team Penkse account requested some fatherly advice for their driver. Larson is father to 2-year-old son, Owen.

One of Larson’s primary sponsors is Target, the retail chain based in Minnesota that has sponsored Chip Ganassi Racing since before Larson was born in 1992

Larson was asked about his shopping habits at the store.

When asked about his favorite dirt and asphalt tracks, Larson named Thunderbowl Raceway in Tulare, California, and Bristol Motor Speedway.

Larson was also asked what the biggest moment of his racing career was. He chose his sweep of the 4-Crown Nationals, a USAC event at Eldora Speedway, on Sept. 24, 2011.

Where he thinks the Monster Energy All-Star Race should be run:

On whether it’s part of a driver’s job to sign autographs:

And finally, who is the one Cup driver Larson wants to compete against in a race on a dirt track:

and on Facebook

Dale Earnhardt Jr. does best to balance fan expectations vs. interactions

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Dale Earnhardt Jr, experiencing his own troublesome time in his final season of NASCAR Cup racing, has sympathy for Danica Patrick.

Last weekend a Facebook Live video showed Patrick lecturing fans and saying ‘I have feelings, too” after she was booed for not signing autographs at Pocono Raceway.

Earnhardt said on his weekly podcast, “She’s had a tough year. She’s under tons of pressure. She’s under a lot of pressure. I can completely relate to where she is mentally.”

Earnhardt later added, “I hate it for Danica because it paints her in a bad light, but she brought it on herself. … You never know when a camera’s rolling, whose watching. It’s certainly true in that case.”

In the latest episode of the Dale Jr. Download, the 14-time most popular driver addressed a big debate that’s come out of the video — is it a driver’s job to sign autographs?

Earnhardt discussed how signing autographs works as sort of therapy for him, especially in a season where he’s struggling to perform on the track.

“The thing is I have found that what makes me feel better is actually going and signing autographs because the fans talk to you and go ‘I saw your qualifying, I saw it wasn’t very good. No problem, you’re going to get them tomorrow,’ Earnhardt said. “That’s all you really want to hear, from whoever is going to tell you that. You’re feeling like crap, you’re disappointed. … Going and actually going to talk to the fans and hearing their reinforcement, their positive reinforcement is good for me. I kind of seek that out in those moments because I know once I go through that process of signing some autographs, talking and interacting, you kind of get your priorities readjusted, what’s important.

“They tell you what you need to hear. ‘Get over this. Tomorrow’s another day.’ I’ll dwell on things and make an ant hill a mountain and make a problem much worse than it really is in my head. So for me it’s good therapy to interact.”

Even though he is the most high-profile face in NASCAR, Earnhardt still gets to experience life as a fan when he encounters celebrities from other walks of life. So he understands when a racing fan is let down by an encounter with a driver at the track.

“When I meet a famous person, I just want to walk away feeling like ‘Man, I’m glad I pull for that guy’ or ‘Man, it was cool to meet him,’ ” Earnhardt said. “I hate to say it this way, cause I think it puts a little unnecessary pressure on that celebrity, but you just don’t want to be disappointed by the way they act, how they interact with you. It can be quick and small. I don’t think people or myself have to have five minutes or an hour of your time. But just don’t be an a****** or disappoint. I like to take pictures. If I see, even today, if I see a celebrity, I kind of really want a picture with them. So I can post it on my social media.”

and on Facebook

Noah Gragson pays up on Twitter wager, consumes spicy Wasabi

Twitter: @OffAxisPaint
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Kids, there are plenty of rules to follow to make your social media experience a pleasant one.

Today, we’re only addressing two.

First, if you have to ask Twitter to make you do something, you probably shouldn’t do it.

Second, if you’re going to ignore the first rule, set higher retweet benchmarks.

That’s what Camping World Truck Series driver Noah Gragson learned today. Driver of Kyle Busch Motorsports’ No. 18 Toyota, Gragson decided to have some fun with his lunch.

For those like myself who only know of it from a certain Barenaked Ladies song (“Hot like Wasabi when I bust rhymes”), Wasabi is a very spicy form of Japanese horseradish.

In less than an hour after his initial tweet, Gragson had lost out on his bet. Instead of busting out rhymes, Gragson was chugging water.

Thank you for participating in today’s Social Media 101 class.

Make Twitter bets responsibly.

Austin Dillon performs Coke 600 celebratory burnout in his barn

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There was one downside to Austin Dillon‘s winning strategy in the Coca-Cola 600.

The driver of the No. 3 Chevrolet didn’t have enough gas to do the obligatory burnout on Charlotte Motor Speedway’s frontstretch.

But that didn’t keep the Richard Childress Racing driver from eventually performing one Monday morning to celebrate his first Cup win in 133 starts.

Dillon posted a video to Instagram showing him behind the wheel of a gold Chevrolet car, burning rubber in his barn as friends cheer him on and his Victory Lane interview plays on a nearby TV.

The song “Purple Lamborghini” by Rick Ross and Skrillex is going full blast as the scene plays out.

Didn't get to burnout at the track so made sure we got one when we got home #BarnLife happy for my #3Boys

A post shared by austindillon3 (@austindillon3) on

 and on Facebook

A look at Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s most popular tweets

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Dale Earnhardt Jr.‘s NASCAR racing career has been long and memorable and will end after the 2017 season.

But his social media career has been short, insightful, news breaking and often times hilarious.

After years of dragging his feet, the 14-time most popular driver joined Twitter on Feb. 24, 2014 after his second Daytona 500 and NASCAR hasn’t been the same.

In hindsight, Earnhardt’s social media use has been a captivating look at the twilight of his racing career, which began with arguably one of the biggest wins of his career.

Here’s a look at Earnhardt’s eight most retweeted tweets.

  1. Feb. 24, 2014 – The morning after his second Daytona 500 win, Earnhardt poses with a statue of his late father, Dale Earnhardt Sr., that is outside Daytona International Speedway. It’s been retweeted 26,629 times.

2.  Feb. 24, 2014 – Just after 2:30 a.m. ET, the NASCAR and Twitter world changed forever when Earnhardt posted his first surprise tweet from Victory Lane after winning his second Daytona 500. It was Earnhardt’s first Cup win since the June 2012 Michigan race and only his second Cup win since 2008. It’s been retweeted 20,026 times.

3. Feb. 18, 2015 – Fourteen years after his father was killed in a crash on the last lap of the Daytona 500, Earnhardt acknowledged the anniversary. It has been retweeted 10,788 times.

4. January 19, 2017 – Earnhardt is an unabashed fan of sports outside of NASCAR, including of the NFL’s Washington Redskins and the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets. Earlier this year, Earnhardt couldn’t attend a Hornets’ home game. So he decided to give his tickets to one lucky winner. 7,925 people retweeted his post hoping to win.

5. Feb. 25, 2017 – The day before what would turn out to be his last Daytona 500 start, Earnhardt shared a video that had been posted by the official NASCAR Twitter account. Backed with the song “My Old Man” by the Zac Brown Band, the video is a fond remembrance of his relationship with his father. Roughly 7,600 people shared his sentiment.

6. Dec. 11, 2014 – This tweet takes a little bit more of an explanation. Ten months after joining Twitter, Earnhardt tagged rapper J. Cole in a tweet, mentioning he was “funny” with a hashtag #ShitChangedMyLifeBro. The hashtag is a reference to one of J. Cole’s songs, “Note to Self.” Cole referenced Earnhardt in the song after he saw in an ESPN interview that Earnhardt listened to one of his songs before races. The Twitter interaction led to 7,601 retweets and an ESPN: The Magazine cover story.

7. April 29, 2014 – Two months after joining Twitter, Earnhardt very simply wished his late father a happy birthday. It was retweeted more than 6,800 times.

8. Aug. 10, 2014 – Few personally know the tragedy associated with auto racing more than Dale Earnhardt Jr. On Aug. 9, 2014, sprint car driver Kevin Ward Jr. was killed when a sprint car driven by Tony Stewart struck the 20-year-old. Ward had approached the racing lane on foot following a crash at Canandaigua Motorsports Park in New York. The following morning Earnhardt tweeted his condolences to Ward’s family. It was shared 5,579 times.