370 - Al Unser, Jr.: For All My Sins
A pair of Champions, two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Al Unser Jr. and two-time Daytona 500 champ Dale Earnhardt Jr. come to the table to talk about Unser's spectacular life, career and a fall from grace that few could even imagine. Unser Jr.'s resume reads as a fairy-tale, but behind the scenes, his real life was anything but. Most saw the feel-good story of "Little Al," son of a four-time Indy 500 champion, blossoming to become his own success in the Indycar ranks. Seemingly overnight, he was a winner and then a Champion. Hidden in the shadows of the celebrations was the dark side of the driver. Cocaine, marijuana, alcohol abuse, prostitution, and a chain of arrests all took his life to the lowest of lows. How low? In 2012, alone in his apartment, Al Unser Jr. was on the verge of suicide.Unser's career, like the family before him, was defined by the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The Unser's have won the world's most famous race nine-times. It took a tangle with Emerson Fittipaldi in the 1989 running of the 500 to put the pressure to win at the Brickyard on Al Jr. In 1992, on his tenth try, in a near photo finish, the young Unser crossed the yard of brick a victor. He details the dramatic last lap with Dale Jr. and co-host Mike Davis and describes the emotion that overcame him.Despite being an IROC Champion, Al only made one career NACAR Cup Series Start, in the 1993 Daytona 500. He tells Dale Jr how a phone call may have led to crashing (wink, wink) their primary car in order to roll out a faster Hendrick Motorsports #46.Growing up Unser wasn't easy. From a demanding Uncle to a Champion father, there was a lot to live up to. Al Jr. reveals how his parents divorce at a young age set the stage for an up-and-down upbringing that included racing, crime and mischief. Despite the challenges, Al Jr. just wanted to race. He admits that "racing was his escape."Despite a long fight with substance abuse, Al sits at the table a new man. Is he forgiven by all? Has he forgiven himself? These days, the 59 year old finds his redemption in his walk with faith. Unser Jr. shares how it has given him new life.Before Al Unser Jr. arrived, Dale and Mike went over a wild NASCAR weekend in Fontana. They discussed everything from flat tires, weird tow-trucks to the run-in between Hendrick teammates Kyle Larson and Chase Elliott. Speaking of teammate tension, Dale calls in Josh Berry to the studio to talk about his California clash with JR Motorsports teammate Justin Allgaier.Dale, Mike and producer Matthew Dillner welcomed a new member of the DJD team, Hannah Newhouse. She brings a plethora of fan questions in Ask Jr. We learn some insight into the potential Fontana reconfiguration. Of course Dale Jr. wants more Short Tracks and rallies for it, but is he sour to the idea of a Chicago Street Course race? Did you know Dale wants to be involved in the music scene? DJ Dale explains. All of that and much more on a packed episode.
369 - Ernie Francis, Jr.: Future Force
371 - DEI Days: The Rise
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.