Earnhardt Jr. Spends Day at Redskins Camp

Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. talks with Redskins head coach Joe Gibbs after practice Thursday. (John McDonnell - The Washington Post)
Friday, August 12, 2005

As if Dale Earnhardt Jr. didn't have enough going through his mind Sunday afternoons, the Washington Redskins fan gets his favorite football team's scores radioed to him -- while he's racing.

Earnhardt, who has followed the Redskins since he was about 8 years old, was a guest yesterday at Redskins Park, where he spent one of his few days off watching training camp from the sideline.

"My fans tell me when I lose, it ruins their week," said Earnhardt, who is NASCAR's most popular driver. "When the Redskins lose, it ruins my week. My dream growing up was to be a Washington Redskin."

The highlight of Earnhardt's afternoon came at the end of practice when he met Redskins Coach Joe Gibbs , who owns one of NASCAR's most successful teams. Joe Gibbs Racing driver Tony Stewart won Sunday's NASCAR race in Indianapolis and assumed the Nextel Cup points lead.

Asked if he would ever consider driving for Gibbs, Earnhardt said: "That would be awesome. Everything he's been associated with has been a success. . . . [But] today had nothing to do with racing."

Gibbs joked that he can't afford Earnhardt.

"If I had $100 million, I could do that, and that's what he left out," Gibbs said. "He makes about $50 million a year, so if I could top that, we might have a chance."

-- Tarik El-Bashir

© 2005 The Washington Post Company