In 2014, Dale Earnhardt Jr. had been eliminated from the playoffs but he still had some unfinished business. Martinsville loomed and he wanted a grandfather clock to go along with the six that his father Dale Earnhardt Sr. had.
On the restart Earnhardt recalled: “I got some tires here so I’m coming fast. I gotta be quick about this because behind me is Jeff Gordon and he’s on (fresh) tires, too. And he’s been pretty much the best car all day. … So I catch Tony. I gotta hurry to get by Tony because if Jeff Gordon can get to my bumper, he’s going to use it. And so I gas it up here [hitting Stewart in the left door] and I’m like, ‘Sorry, Tony I got to hit you in the door.’ … If I don’t throttle up there I’m gonna get beat down the straightaway and Gordon’s gonna be right there.”
Earnhardt held on to win his only Martinsville race – and that is quite understandably his favorite Martinsville memory.
It’s not his only memorable moment, however. In the video above, Earnhardt also recalls one of his first trips to Martinsville when he practically hit everything inside the track – including a truck in the infield.
Earnhardt can’t remember how many times he wrecked that day, but he does remember the exchange with his father during the ride back North Carolina. Dale Sr. was not impressed with his performance.