He’s also a North Carolina native like Dale Sr., and they were friends long before either one of them had any sort of notoriety or success in racing.
So of course, he has plenty of good stories about The Intimidator from way, way back, and he shared some great ones with Dale Jr. and co-host Mike Davis this week, including the fact that Dale Sr. wasn’t just a scary driver on the track…
He didn’t mess around off the track, either, which really comes as no surprise:
“Your dad was fearless. He was fearless. I’m tellin’ you right now, there was only one of ’em, and he was the only one.
He wasn’t scare of, I mean, anything. And you could not dare him to do nothin’.”
In fact, Dale Sr. would actually keep his truck dashboard stocked with lug nuts, which he would legitimately throw at people’s windshields if he did something they didn’t like on the road, especially when he had a trailer behind him:
“We would leave the race track, and he would grab a handful of lug nuts, throw ’em on the dash.
And somebody passed us, or run us off a ramp, or done something wrong, he’d pitch a couple lug nuts in their windshield.”
To which Jr. rightfully responded:
“Damn! What a wild man.”
And Tony said:
“He was, he was. He’d always have eight or 10 lug nuts, at least.”
I mean, absolutely insane…
Tony also told another insane story about Dale Sr. leaving tire marks on people’s cars parked out in the street if there was something about it he didn’t like too:
“I know another time… he come home and the trailer didn’t have no fenders on it, and there would be cars running up and down the road there that had wheel marks on the side of them.”
To which Dale Jr. responded:
“He’d put the trailer in the damn parked cars on the street!”
And of course, Sr. would throw in that signature lug nut for good measure:
“Well, I mean, they come off that ramp, and if he didn’t like the way they were coming off that ramp, and it was gonna be at the same time, timing was everything, you know… bam!
And then throw a lug nut over.”
And apparently, he also had a loud speaker in the righthand corner of his truck, so he could tell them what the problem was, as well…
“In his truck, he had a loud speaker sittin’ over in the righthand corner, with a CB.
Everybody had CB’s, so he could holler at people and stuff right there.”
I mean, the man was a true one of a kind in every sense of the term.
Keep in mind, these stories are from the very early days, when Jr. says his dad was still young and making some very bad decisions, so I don’t think it’s something he continued doing throughout his life by any stretch of the imagination, either.
And of course, I’m not saying that was a good thing to do at all, but something about it just feels so badass to me, for better or worse…
Sometimes calling Dale Sr. a “legend” or an “icon” still doesn’t feel like enough, honestly. You really can’t make stuff like this up, either, so I’m inclined to believe every word of it.
Make sure you check it out for yourself, it’s really a great episode: