376 - Robert Wickens: Unbreak-able
Being paralyzed from a horrific racing crash has not stopped the drive of Robert Wickens. The paraplegic racer shares his inspirational story with Dale Earnhardt Jr. and co-host Mike Davis.His story is also unorthodox. How did he get into racing? The exposure came from television, NASCAR and a bootleg, sex-free version of Days of Thunder. Dale Jr. and Robert connect on the mutual bond of matchbox cars, which they both, as children, used to emulate the races they watched. The two racers laugh sharing memories of innovating their makeshift tracks. The passion grew and a decision to abandon stick-and-ball sports led Wickens to go-kart racing. From there, his career took off. He moved to the states and then to Europe chasing his dream.While in Europe he navigated the pathway up the motorsports ladder in various series of competition. It was a journey that took him from open-wheeled racecars to German touring cars with Mercedes. While in the Mercedes program, his path even crossed with Formula 1 great Michael Schumacher, who served as an advisor to the team. Wickens earned his FIA Super license and was a reserve driver for a Formula 1 team. He was under contract with an F1 organization but the opportunity was severed by a driver with a bigger checkbook.Wickens’ return to North America came with an opportunity to race in the NTT Indycar Series fulltime with Schmidt Peterson Motorsports. The rookie came out of the gate with authority capturing the pole at the ending of the qualifying session at the season opener at the St. Petersburg course in Florida. Wickens then led the majority of the race before controversial contact with two laps to go between he and his good friend Alexander Rossi. The incident took him out contention for the win.His Indycar progression was going well. Then August 19, 2018. Wickens lined up 6th for the 500-mile race at the tricky Pocono Raceway in Pennsylvania. The seventh lap would change Robert Wickens life forever. While battling Ryan Hunter-Reay, a crash sent his car into the catchfence violently at a speed of 210 mph. Wickens tries to recall the scattered memories he has of the day, that live in bits and pieces in his mind.The accident resulted in badly fractured legs, arms, hands, ribs, neck, a pulmonary contusion and thoracic spinal fracture. Robert Wickens survived the crash but was now faced with being a paraplegic. Wickens reveals what he knows about the time he spent in an induced coma and the struggle to just survive.. He then opens up about the pain he endured from his injuries, both physically and mentally, and the ripple effect its had on so many people in his life.His journey since the crash has been damn-near miraculous. Driven by a thirst for independence and a desire to return to racing, Robert Wickens fought through various levels of rehabilitation to get to his ultimate goal. That goal? Strapping in behind the wheel of a racecar. At first, E-Sports and iRacing were his proving grounds. Now, the next chapter has begun as Wickens is competing in IMSA's Pilot Series for Hyundai in a racecar with hand-controls.It's a journey that has inspired so many, including everyone in the room. OPEN SEGMENTBefore Wickens' arrival, Dale Earnhardt Jr. reveals what it was like to be a part of the nomination panel, for the first time, at the NASCAR Hall of Fame. The DJD then debates who they would select from that list to make it into the next class of the HOF. Who should be in the Hall and why? ASKJR Presented By Xfinity Hannah Newhouse picks the best fan questions from Twitter and the Dirty Mo Media live chat. We discuss: April fools and dirty pranks Danica Patrick catching the bouquet at Dale and Amy's wedding. The advantage of tape on the grille of your racecar after Kyle Busch's penalty. How the Next Gen car will do on dirt. How iRacing will get its hands dirty in the console game scene. Who built the table?
375 - Ricky Craven: My True North
377 - Cathy Watkins: The Undefeated Earnhardt
About The Show
NASCAR’s 15-time Most Popular Driver and winner of two Daytona 500s, Dale Earnhardt Jr., hosts his very own podcast, The Dale Jr Download on Dirty Mo Media. Earnhardt and co-host Mike Davis raise the bar with unparalleled perspective, candid commentary, and fascinating, first-person insight into the life of a broadcaster, celebrated racer.