It’s hard for us to imagine a world where people don’t just stop what they’re doing whenever they see Dale Earnhardt Jr. and just bow at his feet.
But apparently, that alternate universe is a reality at the 2018 Winter Olympic games in PyeongChang, South Korea, according to “The Washington Post.”
Yes, all the bobsledders, skiers, and skaters are just skating right on past ol’ Junior without even so much as a blink.
And apparently, the anonymity is just fine with the recently retired NASCAR champ, who is embarking on a new career as a broadcaster.
Junior has been in South Korea as a part of NBC’s Olympic broadcast team, which is a super cool gig for him that wasn’t a part of his original NBC plan. He was initially hired to be a special race commentator when NBC takes over the second half of the 2018 NASCAR season.
But NBC didn’t want to wait until then to put Dale to work. That’s why we kept seeing him all over their Super Bowl LII coverage.
Dale’s new career is something he dreamed about, but never thought would come true. Growing up watching his legendary father, Dale Earnhardt, race on TV, Junior paid close attention to the announcers.
“I daydreamed about being able to call races, but I never thought I would,” he told the Post. “I didn’t see myself as having the voice.”
To make sure he’s good at the new gig, Dale is doing his homework, particularly about the Winter Games. In PyeongChang, he is in it to win it! The Post reports that he’s basically now an expert in speedskating, as he’s been studying the sport for weeks in preparation of his role there. Getting up at 5 a.m. to watch it on television, watching all the top skaters on YouTube—he’s going all in.
The speed part comes naturally for Dale, and the whole assignment is perfect for him as it’s the sport dubbed “NASCAR on ice.”
He told the Post, “I feel confident when I feel prepared, so I just ask a lot of questions. I try to be inquisitive, to get as much information as I can. That’s going to give me confidence to go into that kind of fish-out-of-water area and embrace my ignorance and be inquisitive.
“If I think a thought about asking something, I ask it!” he added.
Ask and ye shall receive. You never know, you may just end up at the Olympics!