Reporting Chris “Mac” McClain
I might be a bit biased because I am a huge Dale Earnhardt Jr fan, but my favorite sports moment in the aftermath of 9/11 was Junior’s win at Dover on September 23, 2001.
It was the first Cup race after that tragic day. I would venture to0 say the NASCAR crowd is the most patriotic in all of sports. So, I am pretty sure it was a very emotional day for the 100,000 plus fans at Dover that day.
As the laps counted down and Dale Jr took the checkers, I myself got emotional. To see him win that race after so many great Americans were lost, knowing that he too had lost someone very important that year (his dad Dale Sr. of course), I knew alot of thoughts were racing through his head.
But, it was what he did after the race, that was the coolest moment. He grabbed an American flag from his crew and did a reverse lap with the flag hanging out of the window. Fans were going crazy. At that point I realized how great this moment was for so many fans. The most popular driver won and saluted the great country they love afterwards, less than two weeks after 9/11. There is no doubt, Dale Jr helped many race fans heal that day in Dover.