All posts tagged Tony Eury Jr.

10 Posts
dale-earnhardt-jr-jade-gurss_pepsi400

interview: discussing ‘in the red’ with dale earnhardt jr.’s former publicist, jade gurss

I’ve been pretty clear about the fact that Dale Earnhardt Jr. is the reason that I became a NASCAR fan and subsequently a NASCAR blogger. I’ve chronicled what it meant to me to get to stand in on one of his press conferences and how the MTV documentary “True Life: I’m a a race car driver” is what piqued my interest in racing.

dale jr. wins at daytona and on facebook

DAYTONA BEACH, FL - JULY 02: Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the  Wrangler Chevrolet, hugs crew chief Tony Eury Jr. in victory lane after winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona International Speedway on July 2, 2010 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)Dale Earnhardt Jr. won last night’s Nationwide Series race, the Subway Jalapeno 250 Powered by Coca-Cola, driving the No. 3 Wrangler Chevrolet. It was a huge moment and a great night, a fitting tribute to Dale Earnhardt.

I couldn’t sit down for the last 10 laps! The best part for me was Tony Eury Jr.’s (Dale Jr’s crew chief) reaction to the win. Seeing him dip his head and become emotional made me cry. I know that there’s some redemption value for Dale Jr. with this win but I think it’s bigger for Tony Eury Jr. Especially since he and Dale no longer work together on the #88 team in the Sprint Cup Series. It felt like it meant so much more to see them win together again, to prove that they could do it after all this time.

So, in addition to last night Dale racked up another win of a different kind. He won the bet between him, Dwight Howard, BJ Upton and Reggie Bush in the adidas “Every Team Needs a Fan” contest. He gathered the most fans for the US soccer team and so Dwight, BJ and Reggie all had to wear Dale’s gear. See the video below. I love those shirts. I want one!

Photo fun time!


DAYTONA BEACH, FL - JULY 02: Fans stand in line during a NASCAR Nationwide Series autograph session at Daytona International Speedway on July 2, 2010 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Fans stand in line during a NASCAR Nationwide Series autograph session at Daytona International Speedway on July 2, 2010 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Daytona Beach, FL - July 02, 2010: Dale Earnhardt Jr. waits to start the Subway Jalapeno 250 powered by Coca-Cola race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, FL.
Great shot! :)

Dale Earnhardt Jr. waits to start the Subway Jalapeno 250 powered by Coca-Cola race at Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, FL. (credit: zuma press)

DAYTONA BEACH, FL - JULY 02: Fans hold up three fingers supporting Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the  Wrangler Chevrolet during the NASCAR Nationwide Series Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona International Speedway on July 2, 2010 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Fans hold up three fingers supporting Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the Wrangler Chevrolet during the NASCAR Nationwide Series Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona International Speedway on July 2, 2010 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

DAYTONA BEACH, FL - JULY 02: Jennifer Jo Cobb, driver of the  Driver Boutique Ford, and teammate Johnny Chapman, driver of the  Baker Curb Racing Ford, collide around turn three during the NASCAR Nationwide Series Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona International Speedway on July 2, 2010 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)

This sucked, I really hope Jennifer Jo Cobb can get something together so she can continue to run races in the Nationwide Series this year!

Jennifer Jo Cobb, driver of the Driver Boutique Ford, and teammate Johnny Chapman, driver of the Baker Curb Racing Ford, collide around turn three during the NASCAR Nationwide Series Subway Jalapeno 250 at Daytona International Speedway on July 2, 2010 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)

hendrick breaks up the band

Dale Earnhardt Jr., driver of the No. 88 National Guard/AMP Energy Chevrolet, started Monday's rescheduled 600-mile event at Lowe's Motor Speedway in 27th and finished 40th. (Courtesy Hendrick Motorsports)Tony Eury Jr. is out as Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s crew chief. Is there anyone out there that didn’t see that coming?

Now, I know the thing to do right now is to speculate on something that is entirely impossible to speculate on. Will this help Dale or will it hurt him? All I know is that I don’t think it could get worse. He’s not in the top 12 in points, and he’s only won one race in the past hundred or something races.

All we can do is shut up and watch what happens. This does put the focus totally on Dale because if a year goes by and nothing’s changed then people are really going to think he’s not so talented. That’s not a fun thing to think about. I personally don’t think that’ll happen. I know Dale is a talented driver and I know that he has it in him to be right up there with his Hendrick Motorsports teammates.

I wish the No. 88 team all of the best, and I can’t say that any more emphatically. I want them to do their absolute best, just like I want everyone to do their best (even Kyle Busch *cringe*). That’s what competition is all about. Everybody should be bringin’ it every single week.

It saddens me that it wasn’t better with Tony and Dale. They’re cousins, they’re family, and they’re close. That’s a super tough situation, something I don’t think people can really understand unless they’re in that same scenario themselves. Breaking up with your cousin can’t be fun or easy. I think loyalty matters to Dale and this decision has to weigh heavy on his heart. If it was easy, I think he would have initiated it himself a long, long time ago.

Oh there I go, speculating again. :)

dear dale, it’s not me, it’s you

Dale Earnhardt Jr. (photo credit: Getty Images for NASCAR)I’m a Dale Earnhardt Jr. fan and lately things between Dale and I have been, uh, just so-so.

He won one race last year and it wasn’t a really great, clean and obvious win. I feel like there’s something missing from our driver/fan relationship, something that only a truly mesmerizing, hard fought and clear-cut win could cure.

It used to be that when I’d sit down to watch a Cup race I’d be all nervous and anxious for Dale. Nowadays I’m pretty sedated. I know that Dale has it in him to win but those old feelings just aren’t there like they used to be. Even when he’s leading a race I’ve learned to not get my hopes up because something usually goes wrong.

I don’t blame Tony Eury Jr. I don’t know who to blame to be honest with you. Dale isn’t the only guy in the field that hasn’t won a lot either. If you’re name isn’t Jimmie, Matt, Carl or Kyle you’ve got some splainin’ to do of your own.

It occurred to me recently that I don’t feel that same excitement and butterflies I used to get when he’d hop into his racecar. I find my eyes wandering off to other drivers and I feel kind of guilty.

If Dale wants me to feel the same way I did when we first met he needs to produce some entertaining finishes. He must promise to remember where his pit box is and he must remember my birthday (he totally forgot last year! sheesh!). Okay, all kidding aside, I believe in Dale or else he wouldn’t be my number one favorite driver but I need him to give me a reminder of why I wanted to believe in him in the first place.

If this was a normal relationship roses and a really sweet card would cover it but because it isn’t I’ll settle for a top-3 finish instead.

the watkins glen craptacular spectacular

Kyle Busch, driver of the #18 M&M's Toyota, drives during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Centurion Boats at the Glen at the Watkins Glen International on August 10, 2008 in Watkins Glen, NY. (Photo by Todd Warshaw/Getty Images for NASCAR)For some reason it has been so hard to write this post today. I’ve been wracking my brain trying to figure out what I want to say about yesterday’s Sprint Cup Series race at Watkins Glen.

I was confused by Tony Eury Jr.’s decision to leave Dale Earnhardt Jr. out on the track long after everyone else had already pitted. And then I was even more confused when I watched NASCAR Now hours after the race ended to find Dale Jr. sitting down giving an interview looking all worn out and sounding all lame and weary. I can’t even wrap my brain around all that right now. All I know is that I hope they get stuff figured out before Michigan.

And as if watching Dale Jr. lose two spots in the points standings and having to suffer through another Kyle Busch win wasn’t enough, there was the big wreck to process.

Here’s how I feel about the big wreck:

1.) I’m glad Bobby Labonte seems to be ok; they took him to a local hospital where he was checked and then released.

2.) In the post-wreck interview David Gilliland had with ESPN’s Marty Smith he made it seem like he felt that it was Michael McDowell’s fault and from what I saw of the video that’s what it looked like to me. McDowell said that he didn’t see Gilliland. So there ya go. This doesn’t do much for McDowell’s reputation. He’s a rookie and hopefully he’ll be able to keep himself out of trouble in the future.

NASCAR is one of those sports where if you make a mistake it has the potential to hurt other people who had nothing to do with it at all, in a way that is so different from any other team sport. For example, if you’re in a relay team and you’re the weakest leg of the team, your team might lose because of you, but at least you didn’t take out 5 other teams in the process. But situations like that — everything that happened at Watkins Glen — are what make NASCAR races so dramatic and interesting to watch.

3.) So in the end the crash, and it’s subsequent red flag clean-up, sucked.

4.) Max Papis sounds a lot like The Count from Sesame Street. He seems like a really nice guy who just wanted to finish the race but I kept waiting for him to say “One! One crash!” I’m just sayin’. Oh and here’s a little trivia, yesterday after the race was over Papis was #6 on Google Trends — a daily list of the hottest search terms.

In other news…

– On the bright side for Gilliland fans, he gained one spot in the points standings. Mostly because Mark Martin wasn’t in yesterday’s race, but hey I’ll take it.

– Congratulations to Marcos “Kangaroo Meat” Ambrose and his first ever NASCAR win in the Nationwide Series on Saturday.

Mike Wallace and his daughter Chrissy are heading to New York today tomorrow to ring the closing bell of the New York Stock Exchange. I post this because Germain Racing is trying to build a full-time team for Chrissy so that she can run for the Raybestos Rookie of the Year title in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series next year and they’re looking for sponsors. Check out GermainRacing.com

– Red Bull Racing driver Scott Speed won his fourth ARCA RE/MAX Series race this weekend at Nashville. He leads the points standings by 140 over Matt Carter. I wonder where Speed will be racing next year… hmmm


Marcos Ambros driver of the #59 STP Ford celebrates winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Zippo 200 at the Watkins Glen International on August 9, 2008 in Watkins Glen, NY. (Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Marcos Ambros driver of the #59 STP Ford celebrates winning the NASCAR Nationwide Series Zippo 200 at the Watkins Glen International on August 9, 2008 in Watkins Glen, NY. (Photo by Jerry Markland/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Jimmie Johnson, driver of the No. 48 Lowe's Chevrolet (L) greets grand marshal and former Buffalo Bills tight end Kevin Everett prior to the NASCAR Nationwide Series Zippo 200 at the Watkins Glen International on August 9, 2008 in Watkins Glen, N.Y. (Photo Credit: Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Jimmie Johnson, driver of the No. 48 Lowe’s Chevrolet (L) greets grand marshal and former Buffalo Bills tight end Kevin Everett prior to the NASCAR Nationwide Series Zippo 200 at the Watkins Glen International on August 9, 2008 in Watkins Glen, N.Y. (Photo Credit: Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)

The #43 Cheerios Dodge driven by Bobby LaBonte sits on Pit road after a multi car incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Centurion Boats at the Glen at the Watkins Glen International on August 10, 2008 in Watkins Glen, NY. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)

The #43 Cheerios Dodge driven by Bobby LaBonte sits on Pit road after a multi car incident during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Centurion Boats at the Glen at the Watkins Glen International on August 10, 2008 in Watkins Glen, NY. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)

if only more teachers looked like him

I’m gearing up for my trip to Chicago tomorrow and I couldn’t be more excited. I’m going to attempt to document my trip with video but we’ll see how that goes.

I checked the weather today and there’s a 40% chance of rain at Chicagoland on Saturday. There’s supposed to be isolated thunderstorms in the evening. Ew.

So, did you know that Carl Edwards was once a substitute teacher? I just found that out. Carl will be at the Office Depot store in Frankfort, IL (11145 West Lincoln Highway) tomorrow at 11am, in order to help The Office Depot Foundation with their “Back To School” event. The Foundation is donating 3,000 backpacks to local organizations that work with kids in the greater-Chicago area. There’s also an opportunity to meet Carl and get his autograph at the same store from noon to 1pm. Get there early though, they start passing out wristbands at 8am, one per person with only 200 available.

One more thing about Carl, his No. 99 Office Depot Ford will have a special super cool paint scheme this weekend:
No. 99 Office Depot paint scheme for the LifeLock.com 400 at Chicagoland Speedway (courtesy of Office Depot)

The No. 99 Office Depot Ford piloted by Edwards will feature a one-of-a-kind “Taking Care of Business” paint scheme this weekend, featuring the individual signatures of close to 8,000 Office Depot associates from around the world. The signatures – collected from Canada to Korea, from Slovakia to Spain, from the United States to the United Kingdom – are representative of the fact that Office Depot associates in more than 40 countries across the globe help customers “take care of business” every day.

In other appearance news:

– In association with Jim Beam, Robby Gordon will be at the Cadillac Ranch in Bartlett, IL (1175 W Lake Street) tomorrow night from 10pm to 11pm.

– The crew of the No. 88 AMP Energy/National Guard Chevrolet (including Tony Eury Jr.) are taking in a Cubs game tonight at Wrigley Field.

In other regular news:

Jimmy Elledge is joining Red Bull Racing as the crew chief for AJ Allmendinger and the No. 84 team. AJ seems to be happy to have the help: “Of all the crew chiefs in the Cup garage, Jimmy is one of the only ones I’ve spoken to and had a chance to get to know. When I drove a few Nationwide races at Ganassi last year, Jimmy was always helpful. He’s a guy with a lot of crew chief experience and has a good knowledge of these race cars, so I’m looking forward to turning this season around together.”

Good for them, I hope it works out.

forty-three drivers and he has to win?

Race winner Kyle Busch (18) and runner-up Carl Edwards (99) race side-by-side on the last lap of the Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway. (Photo Credit: John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)Yes, the Coke Zero 400 powered by Coca-Cola at Daytona International Speedway was a good race. It was intriguing and crazy right down to the last lap, but of course I hated how it ended.

Why, why, why did he have to win again?? WHY?? If the rest of the season plays out like this I don’t know what I’m going to do. It’s sooo boring if the same person keeps winning. Yes, he’s talented and all that, yes, I get it. I can appreciate that fact but it’s so freaking boring to watch. I don’t want to hear the same person in victory lane each week. Even if it was Dale Earnhardt Jr. I promise you I would be bored with that too. It wouldn’t be painful to watch of course but it would be boring.

The coolest thing was seeing David Gilliland running up front. That was truly awesome; I only wonder what could have happened had his pit stop not gone so bad. And see that’s what I’m looking for people, I’m not just out to see Dale Jr. win I wanna see a variety of drivers win. It helps to keep things interesting. If it ever comes to a time when NASCAR only has 4 major teams running several cars, shutting out all of the small teams, then I don’t know if I could watch anymore.


Kevin Harvick (R), driver of the #29 Reese's Chevrolet, stands with wife, DeLana (L), prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 5, 2008 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Kevin Harvick (R), driver of the #29 Reese’s Chevrolet, stands with wife, DeLana (L), prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 5, 2008 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Tony Eury Jr., crew chief for Dale Earnhardt Jr., #88 National Guard/AMP Energy Chevrolet reacts to race action during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 5, 2008 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Uh, yea, my thoughts exactly.

Tony Eury Jr., crew chief for Dale Earnhardt Jr., #88 National Guard/AMP Energy Chevrolet reacts to race action during the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway on July 5, 2008 in Daytona Beach, Florida. (Photo by Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Sprint Cup driver Paul Menard earned his first pole Friday at Daytona International Speedway for Saturday's Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola (Photo Credit: Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Does he smile like ever?

Sprint Cup driver Paul Menard earned his first pole Friday at Daytona International Speedway for Saturday’s Coke Zero 400 Powered by Coca-Cola (Photo Credit: Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Martin Truex Jr. chats with Kevin Costner, who performed a pre-race concert with his band Modern West. (Photo Credit: Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Martin Truex Jr. chats with Kevin Costner, who performed a pre-race concert with his band Modern West. (Photo Credit: Geoff Burke/Getty Images for NASCAR)

where reality and dreams collide

Back in August I wrote about my plans/desire to spend 2008 following NASCAR Sprint Cup racing around the country. Since then I have spent my time thinking of and working on every conceivable angle that would allow me to get out there and make this dream happen. It wasn’t until last Friday when my hopes of working my current day job AND setting out on this road trip were dashed by my employer.

I was down about it for the rest of the day until the next morning when I decided that I would just start the trip at the end of June of this year. That will give me 19 races to attend and I can spend the time between now and June saving money and figuring out other ways to earn a living whilst on the road. Hmm, that sounded weird, but you know what I mean!

Over the past couple weeks I’ve been given a chance at an amazing opportunity to grow this site. I’ll have more specific details once everything is finalized. It’s very exciting and I’m so stoked about it.

In other news…

The testing continues in Daytona and here are some photos from yesterday’s sessions.


Photo Credit: Rusty Jarrett / Getty Images for NASCAR

Richard Petty and flames adorn the No. 43 Petty Enterprises car driven by Bobby Labonte. (Photo Credit: Rusty Jarrett / Getty Images for NASCAR)

Photo Credit: Sam Greenwood / Getty Images for NASCAR

Kasey Kahne takes over the Budweiser ride as the Gillett Evernham Motorsports No. 9 car gets a new primary sponsor. (Photo Credit: Sam Greenwood / Getty Images for NASCAR)

Photo Credit: Rusty Jarrett / Getty Images for NASCAR

David Ragan has taken off his rookie stripe and prepares for his sophomore season during Preseason Thunder at Daytona International Speedway. (Photo Credit: Rusty Jarrett / Getty Images for NASCAR)

Photo Credit: Rusty Jarrett / Getty Images for NASCAR

No. 88 crew chief Tony Eury Jr. talks with Dale Earnhardt Jr. as they begin their first season together at Hendrick Motorsports. (Photo Credit: Rusty Jarrett / Getty Images for NASCAR)

tallafreakindega

Sunday’s race at Talladega was everything you’d expect from a race at Talladega, three-wide side-by-side racing and of course the “big one” (for those of you not in the know, the “big one” is the big crash the wipes out a bunch of cars at once). The moment Dale Earnhardt Jr. took the lead I was so hopeful that he would be able to hold on to the lead and finally win one this season. And then his engine blew up which seemed to signal the beginning of the end for the DEI-RCR engines. I was in utter disbelief and I still am because that race was his, it was right there and then poof!

So at this point I’m sure any and every Dale Jr. fan is just counting down the days until he makes his debut with Hendrick Motorsports next year. All of the Hendrick cars did well at Talladega, except for Kyle Busch who’s crappy outlook on things before the race are — I’m sure of it — what helped lead to his involvement in the wreck that took him out.

Oddly enough I was actually happy with Jeff Gordon’s win, I’m usually more interested in seeing a fresh face win, but he made it interesting at the end between him and Jimmie Johnson. For that I am appreciative.

The thing I was most excited about was seeing Michael Waltrip on the pole and running up front. I miss that guy, he’s a great character and NASCAR needs guys like him. He keeps it fun and interesting. It looks like things are looking up for Michael Waltrip Racing and I look forward to seeing that team win a race.

I didn’t watch the race live because I was out checking out apartments for my upcoming move. I caught the entire race on Tivo and I am almost tempted to make this the standard for the rest of the races this season. Why? Because it’s so nice to be able to bypass all the lame commentary by the ESPN on ABC crew. I put being able to skip over Rusty Wallace’s comments above being able to skip commercials, and that’s seriously saying something, especially when I’m beginning to tire of the seeing the same Allstate girls ads over and over.

In other news…

I’m still on the hunt for sponsors for my 2008 NASCAR project and I sent a letter to American Airlines to see if they’d be interested. I got a phone call from them last week and I was told that they don’t sponsor “dangerous sports” because they don’t want to be associated with things where people can crash. I just thought that was kind of funny but at the same time it makes sense, I guess, to not want people to associate crashing with planes.


Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR

Ella is a little cutie, and I love her itty bitty sandals.

Jeff Gordon, driver of the #24 Dupont/Pepsi Chevrolet, holds his daughter Ella Sophia, as his wife Ingrid looks on, in victory lane after Gordon won the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on October 7, 2007 in Talladega, Alabama. (Photo by Rusty Jarrett/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Jeff Gordon (right) celebrates inside Victory Lane with daughter Ella (center) and team owner Rick Hendrick (left) after winning the NASCAR NEXTEL Cup Series race at Talladega Superspeedway on Oct. 7. (Hendrick Motorsports/Autostock)

Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR

Crew members of the #48 Lowe’s Chevrolet, driven by Jimmie Johnson, congratulate the crew members of the #24 Dupont/Pepsi Chevrolet, driven by teammate Jeff Gordon, after winning the NASCAR Nextel Cup Series UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega Superspeedway on October 7, 2007 in Talladega, Alabama. (Photo by John Harrelson/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images for NASCAR

All the hoopla and then in the end nothing really happened.

Jacques Villeneuve was the center of media attention after qualifying for Sunday’s UAW-Ford 500 at Talladega Superspeedway. Villeneuve qualified 6th. (Photo Credit: Chris Graythen/Getty Images for NASCAR)

Photo Credit: Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR

Crew Chief Tony Eury, Jr. talks to his driver Dale Earnhardt, Jr. before practice at Talladega Superspeedway. (Photo Credit: Jason Smith/Getty Images for NASCAR)

racing from work

How bad have I got it?

I’m sitting here at work with a window for NASCAR.COM’s Live Leaderboard open, along with the TrackPass Scanner window. I’m listening to the Dale Earnhardt Jr. channel. This is what I must do because as tempting as it was to call in “sick” today so that I could watch the race live on TV, I couldn’t go through with it.

Is it just me or do Dale Jr. and his crew chief/cousin Tony Eury Jr. sound alike? It’s kinda freaky.

Anyway… all I can say is that Kurt Busch must be stopped!