Getty Images

Matt Kenseth discusses early progress for Roush cars on Dale Jr. Download

Leave a comment

Matt Kenseth shares parenting tips for Dale Earnhardt Jr., discusses their early days racing together and talks about his return to the car for Roush Fenway Racing in this week’s Dale Jr. Download.

Kenseth returned to the Cup Series earlier this month, driving the No. 6 Ford for Roush Fenway Racing at Kansas. He finished 36th after he was eliminated by a crash. He won the pole for last weekend’s All-Star Race and finished 14th in the 21-car field.

Kenseth will be back in the car for Sunday’s Coca-Cola 600 and the next two races (Pocono and Michigan) before Trevor Bayne drives the No. 6 at Sonoma.

Kenseth and Bayne will split time in the car the rest of the season.

Kenseth, without a ride after Joe Gibbs Racing did not renew his contract last year, was brought to Roush Fenway Racing to help that organization improve its cars.

“It’s been really different for me because it’s a different role than I’ve ever felt like I’ve had through my racing career,’’ Kenseth said on the podcast.

After two races, Kenseth is learning what needs to be done to help the team. 

“I kind of now know where I feel like that they’re at and how much we need to do to get back to an extremely competitive environment,’’ Kenseth said, “so it’s just a lot different role and different feeling than I’ve ever had before, it’s more of a project.’’

In terms of that project, where do things stand after two races?

“Obviously, there’s a lot of room for improvement,’’ Kenseth said. “I think, the potential is there but certainly it’s going to take some work and probably a little more patience and a little more time than maybe I originally thought.’’

Listen to the show here and all that Kenseth had to say.

NASCAR America: Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kyle Busch find friendship – will their fans?

2 Comments

After years of an icy relationship, Dale Earnhardt Jr. and Kyle Busch have mended fences from events that began in 2007 and included the run-ins they had in the 2008 Richmond races.

The result was a Dale Jr. Download podcast between the two that was enlightening and entertaining as they looked back on what pulled them apart and later brought them back together to be friends.

MORE: Dale Earnhardt Jr. on the lessons learned from hashing it out with Kyle Busch

At the end of the podcast, Earnhardt summed up what the experience meant to him.

“Everything I gathered from this whole experience is that there are a lot of assumptions that were incorrect in this whole deal that festered over years, a few conversations, although they are very hard to have, would have helped the situation for everyone,” he said. “Hopefully, this whole podcast inspires a lot of people to go out and get with their archrival and straighten (stuff) out.”

Both were asked if they wanted their fans – many who have been on opposite sides through the years – to get along.

“It wouldn’t bother me if they did,” Earnhardt said.

“It wouldn’t bother me if they did,” Busch responded.

For more on what they said, check out the video above and those below.

 and on Facebook

Dale Earnhardt Jr., Kyle Busch discuss fallout of 2008 Richmond incident

Getty Images
1 Comment

The end of the May 2008 Cup race at Richmond Raceway resulted in an angry crowd, hurt feelings and a handful of death threats for Kyle Busch.

It’s the race where Busch sent Dale Earnhardt Jr. spinning and fans into a frenzy that still hasn’t quite died down.

Ahead of this weekend’s Richmond race, Busch stopped by the Dale Jr. Download for a further discussion of the spin that shook Junior Nation.

During the podcast the two discussed the fallout of the incident, with included Busch receiving “crazy death threats” in its wake.

“There was death threats to the house,” said Busch, who also recalled a death threat cutting short his victory celebration after an Xfinity race later in the year. “As soon as I did the victory lane stuff they corralled me and got me and took me into a cop car and took me out of the race track in a cop car.

“I’m like ‘What are we doing boys? What’s going on?’ ” Busch said. “They were like, ‘We’ve had a tipoff that there’s a shooter on the loose. A guy’s coming to the race track with a shotgun.'”

Busch said such threats happened “periodically” through 2008 and once or twice the following year.

“We actually had a behind-the-scenes FBI guy tailing me through the rest of ’08, we didn’t think we needed him anymore after ’08 was over,” Busch said. “He came with us about everywhere.”

On the track, Earnhardt and Busch’s feud, which began building in 2007, continued in the fall when the series returned to Richmond and Earnhardt enacted his revenge,  spinning Busch while he led on Lap 212.

“I felt like I had to do something,” Earnhardt said, citing pressure from fans to drive like his father. “Here is the perfect opportunity, right there in front of me. We’re at the same race track, we’re running you down early in the race. It was just the perfect opportunity. … I had been contemplating it. Dreaming about it. … If you can understand this man, even contemplating about it, thinking about it, (I was) dreading it. ‘Cause I didn’t want to do it, but I had to do it.”

Head to JeffGluck.com for an oral history of the 2008 race at Richmond.

Thursday’s NASCAR America, which airs from 6-6:30 pm ET, will feature the Dale Jr. Download with Kyle Busch for the entire show.

NASCAR America: Dale Jr.: Brad Keselowski tries to ‘keep people guessing’

Leave a comment

So far Brad Keselowski‘s prophecy in November that Ford teams would be in trouble this year when they raced the oldest body of the sport’s three manufacturers hasn’t panned out.

In fact the opposite has occurred with Kevin Harvick, a Ford driver, winning the last two Cup races. Ford had five cars in the top 10 at Atlanta and six in the top 10 Sunday at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

On the latest episode of the “Dale Jr. Download,” NBC Sports analyst Dale Earnhardt Jr. addressed the performance of Ford drivers so far and why he thinks Keselowski makes a big deal about manufacturer success.

“I think that he wants to downplay their success, I think he wants to exaggerate the performance of the other manufacturers and keep some focus on them,” Earnhardt said. “That’s just his thing. He’s gonna always try to be vocal and keep people guessing on what’s real and what’s not. He seems to enjoy being that guy and everybody’s come to really expect it out of him and it’s entertaining.”

Watch the above video for more from Earnhardt’s podcast on Keselowski and Sunday’s race at Las Vegas.

Wednesday morning, Keselowski and Earnhardt traded responses on Twitter about Earnhardt’s comments in the video above.

Video: Dale Earnhardt Jr. dishes on Kyle Busch’s comments, Super Bowl

Leave a comment

Dale Earnhardt Jr., just back from his Super Bowl trip for NBC, taped his Dale Jr. Download podcast in front of NBC cameras, and you can watch some of the footage here.

To hear the entire podcast, go to the Dale Jr. Dirty Mo Download site.

Earnhardt, who will be heading to the Winter Olympics in South Korea soon for his next NBC assignment, had much to discuss about his trip to Minneapolis for the Super Bowl, from the behind-the-scene stories of spending a day doing various outdoor activities with Rutledge Wood to having Jimmy Fallon bless his baby.

As it was Earnhardt’s first podcast of the year, he also delved into NASCAR issues and discussed the recent comments by Kyle Busch and other drivers about how NASCAR markets its competitors.

Check out Earnhardt’s podcast for much more. Check out the videos above and below for Earnhardt’s stories and takes on NASCAR happenings.