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Opinions.. yours and mine..

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April 2009
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Opinions……. You know the old story every one has one and they all stink… well this one has a new life I would like to look at. It has not to much to do with racing but more so how people look at racing. In the world today there are so many forms of information for readers to explore, looking for racing information, blogs, articles, online magazines, one after another. But here too you have to learn what to give credit to and what to discount. For example….. Jeff Gluck who writes for “Jeff Gluck has covered NASCAR for five seasons. He has worked for NASCAR Scene as an associate editor since 2007. “ now this is his bio from Scene daily…. don’t say much about his knowledge of racing does it? Wow he has covered CASCAR for 5 whole seasons. But yet lots of people read his recent article about Teresa Earnhardt and her being the reason for the demise of the 8 car. Lets look at facts for a second……. From Wiki “Teresa Houston was born in 1958 in Hickory, North Carolina. She is the daughter of Hal & Betty Houston, and the niece of Tommy Houston, legendary Busch Series driver. Her father Hal was a sportsman racer at Hickory Motor Speedway. She graduated from Piedmont Community College in 1978. She married Dale Earnhardt on November 14, 1982. She and her husband built Dale Earnhardt, Inc., (DEI) into one of the most successful enterprises in NASCAR. When Dale Sr. was killed in a wreck on the last lap of the 2001 Daytona 500, Teresa took over the company and initiated a successful merchandising program. She was also influential in getting Dale Sr.’s autopsy photos kept private. In response to this, The Florida Senate by a 40-0 vote passed SB 1356, also dubbed the “Earnhardt Family Protection Act,” which made releasing autopsy photographs a third-degree felony. The bill contained a clause making it retroactive, thereby sealing Earnhardt’s autopsy materials from individuals seeking to capitalize on his celebrity. Teresa Earnhardt (née Houston) is the widow of Dale Earnhardt and mother of Taylor Nicole Earnhardt (born December 20, 1988). She is the stepmother of Kerry Earnhardt, Kelley Earnhardt Elledge and Dale Earnhardt Jr. She is the president and Chief Executive Officer of Earnhardt Ganassi Racing, thus making her the first woman in NASCAR history to own a team. She was portrayed by Elizabeth Mitchell in the movie 3: The Dale Earnhardt Story.” Now this “In May 2007, her stepson Dale Earnhardt Jr. announced he would not be returning to DEI for the 2008 NASCAR season. Dale Jr. left DEI as an agreement could not be reached between Jr and DEI that suited him and his three other siblings who all claim to have an equal right to the business. “But does the media ever bring this to light? No to them it is only the fact that Teresa wouldn’t give Dale Jr what he wanted so she is the evil witch. Again the whole story was not revealed so …. no one knew the whole story. But the media never looked at anything but what they felt the “JrNation” fans wanted to see. Talk about pandering……. And now this, this, “writer” decides that Teresa is the evil witch who is the demise of the 8 car that her stepson Dale Jr, made so famous. Again lets look at facts, the 8 car has a sponsor problem, can’t find one, and with a driver who dont have anything to bring to the table you can see why, look at last year when the NASCAR legend Mark Martin drove the car, didn’t have any problems finding a sponsor then. Put a real driver in the car and the sponsors would be there. But enough of this back to the topic……. Opinions we all have them, and each of us feel ours is right based on feelings our views of the facts and how we see the world. But when you take the feelings out and just look at facts, sometimes things seem to change a little bit. Here is the dr’s opinion…… the 8 car has no sponsors because they haven’t got a driver to attract sponsors, Teresa was left in charge of DEI because Dale Sr. put her in charge of it, the fans who bash her and her actions should keep in mind it was the legend Dale Sr. who put her in charge it wasn’t a hostile takeover by her she was placed in charge by the man himself! Jeff Gluck needs a career change, it is obvious he knows nothing about racing. Yeah these are just opinions and they are mine right or wrong its how the dr see’s things.. Now lets go watch the race at Nashville…. C-ya at the races. The dr.



  1. Jack says:

    Hate to say this but I think you have only one person that agrees with you on this. In fact, I have agreed with you several times in the past. You are absolutely correct on this. She might not be a nice lady and then again, who knows. The blame should be placed where it belongs and that’s not on her.

  2. SLY 1 says:

    Dr you never cease to amase me,you are right as a raindrop
    on this one,fans and the media have labeled her a Witch – well maybe,but the fact is the Media has and is ruining the sport of Nascar and other sports.As far as her step children goes,THEY should have been included in DEI,but were put as far away as she could get them – not right -.
    Blood is Blood as far as Im concerned,and they should have been included.> Just my opinion < Super Blog Bud.The SLY 1

  3. FLETCH346 says:

    As some would say.. ‘I have no dog in this fight.’ The only time I’d bash an Earnhardt in the past is when one of them would be relentless in dogging me about Jeff Gordon. I would just always respond.. ‘Jr. has how many wins!? Jr. has how many Championships!?’ Now, that those two are teammates you don’t really see that as often.. But, onto topic…

    I had no clue as to the other siblings wanting an equal piece of the pie (the dr. always teaching me something). I can understand Kerry .. but, what the heck was Taylor going to do?? If an equal share all around was Teresa’s concern… Why hasn’t DEI been shared.. It is a ‘Family Business’, right?
    The dr. is right and whoever’s rearend is sitting behind the wheel is the one who brings in the sponsor dollars.

    And, I want to bring up a point… Today, it’s a definite good thing to win to help get sponsors but… Look at it.. today you only have about a dozen, and I’m being very considerate, that challenge for a win week in week out.. That leaves about another 40 drivers that are competeing but not necessarily for a win.. Which brings me to this… It’s not only about performing on the track but also how you market yourself. Look at Elliot Sadler, he hasn’t performed too great but he and his team still have sponsors, Jamie Mac, he’s good but real sporadic. Bobby Labonte hasn’t performed all that well and he has the new, ‘’ sponsor. Casey Mears is another one that comes to mind…Nemechek..even Ruetimann.. What do these drivers have in common? Their performance, quite honestly, isn’t all that great but these guys are very marketable and have great personalities…
    If Kyle Busch didn’t win the races.. Would any sponsor dare touch him because of the way he acts?

    So, if DEI had a more marketable driver, could they land sponsor money? Let’s take a look at some available driver..If Kenny Wallace, who most everyone loves, was in the #8, would there be sponsor money? If Terry Labonte could be wooo’ed out of retirement, would the sponsor money be there? I’m betting if they put Awesome Bill from Dawsonville’s rearend in that seat full-time they’d have some dollars… These guys might not win any races but I’d bet they’d win some Sponsor Dough….

  4. gjj says:

    The Dr as always you make us think more then what the media gives us. I still think down the line Jr and his sister will own DEI and bring it back to glory with the next generation of drivers.

  5. FLETCH346 says:

    Gjj, he made me think so hard.. My head hurts now!

  6. Little E~Big M fan says:

    As you already know, I don’t agree with you on this topic…..Teresa was put in charge by unfortunate circumstance, not actually by Sr….yes she help him build up DEI into a success but the plan was for his children to run it (as well as keeping her $$$ comfy)….his vision was for was for it to be passed on to them when he retired from active racing and when they were older….basically when the time was right……all along Sr was calling the timing shots and approving all the marketing ides……Teresa did have some good & successful ideas but always under Sr’s approval…..she may not be the 100% greedy groupie that has become her image….but the demise of DEI began with the loss of Jr and with her being too difficult to deal with……I cannot for the life of me see how any of that shows respect for Sr’s dreams, visions & family.

    Teresa is a lot more involved than just being a figurehead. There is nothing that I can find to dispute that she is anything but a cold hard business woman.
    As Tony Stewart has said a few times……You cannot have a DEI without a DE……She seems to have forgotten that one basic business principle.

  7. Red Zone says:

    Dr., thanks for bringing out the experience of the driver that wrote the article. How does a guy with the lack of experience get a job writing for a natiobal publication? Oh yeah…he knows somebody somewhere.

    I know that the majority don’t really care for David Poole, but I would like to see Poole and Gluck go at it on this topic.

    Since DEI mereged with Gannassi, Chip is the guy out front doing things now and that gives Teresa more time to kick back.

  8. gjj says:

    OK it becomes Gannassi racing again (drops DEI) and DEI becomes a museum and JR comes along and restart DEIj and all is good in nascar again

  9. Shynloco says:

    Well written dr, but I have to partially disagree with you on this one and it has zero to do with the qualification of some sports writer whose been covering racing for 5 years (or any length of time). It has been my life experience that people who have udles of history in a certain field of endeavor are not necessarily qualified or guaranteed to be good businessmen or businesswomen. Such I believe is the case with Teresa Earnhardt.
    DEI was obviously at it’s peek when Dale Sr was alive because of his oversight of all activities and he kept people in line and the business profitable. In fact, I strongly believe that DEI would today be as successful and profitable as Henricks Motorsports had Dale Sr lived. But we know that is impossible so life went on but DEI started to erode, especially after Jr and Kelley left. Their choice to leave (I believe) started the downward spiral of DEI which was brought about, in part, by decisions by Teresa and Max. Because of those changes (and many others I suspect) contributed to a considerable dislike by many of DEI and what many perceived was Teresa’s disrespectful attitude toward Jr and ultimately Dale Sr’s desires for the business. Whether that is factual or merely perceived is irrelivant because the damage had already been done and the makeup of DEI in many categories (engines, crews, drivers, equipment, etc) was to be changed from a cohesive and winning combination, to a so and so average racing business incapable of attaining the winning record it previously enjoyed. Those changes or reduction in efficiency in any business rest squarely on the shoulder of the owner and management of that business. In this case, it rests largely with Teresa. History is one thing. An efficient business is often another.
    I am one those who strongly supported DEI in the past because of Dale Sr and Dale Jr. Teresa may very well have been behind the scenes and responsible, in part, for some success DEI enjoyed. But she was not the main person who made DEI successful. In my humble opinion, I gave Teresa the same consideration when Dale Sr passed. However, though she may not soley bear all the responsibility for DEI’s demise, she certainly contributed to it in large measure. Just my opinion folks!

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