February 6, 2023

Following Noah Gragson’s intentional wreck in the course of the Xfinity race at Street America final weekend — a retaliation to preliminary contact by driver Sage Karam that then triggered harm to 13 vehicles — Dale Earnhardt Jr. spoke on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio’s The Morning Drive.

“I used to be shocked, to be trustworthy with you, once I noticed Noah make that call,” he stated. “I used to be simply — I used to be utterly shocked and in a little bit of disbelief that not solely he made that alternative however that it created such an accident and received so many different guys concerned. And so, that was sort of — I don’t know, that was powerful to look at, actually powerful.”

Earnhardt was additionally shocked that NASCAR didn’t penalize Gragson, however when Gragson spoke on SiriusXM NASCAR Radio, he stated, “Per our crew, I feel there’s most positively gonna be a penalty and we’re gonna see that in a few hours.” On Wednesday afternoon, it was introduced that Gragson can be fined $35,000, plus the crew would lose 30 proprietor and 30 driver factors.

Because the proprietor of JR Motorsports, Earnhardt has made it his mission to hunt out gifted younger drivers like Gragson to mentor them to victories.

“I feel that when Noah made that alternative that he won’t perceive the ripple impact of all of that and simply actually how a lot collateral harm there’s and the way it results lots of people. And so, I informed him that I may stand behind him by way of absolutely anything however I couldn’t defend that,” Earnhardt defined. “And that’s a troublesome place for me or anyone to be in. It’s once you wish to help any individual, and also you’re serving to any individual attempt to obtain their objectives, however they do one thing you possibly can’t defend. That was simply the message I gave him.”

“Dale’s been a terrific mentor to myself,” Gragson stated. “Clearly, errors have been made, however I really feel like if I can study from it and develop into a greater particular person or a greater race-car driver or simply higher total, that’s the factor I have to concentrate on proper now. I actually respect Dale’s opinion.”

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