Dale Jr.: "I've Changed a Lot of Oil"
Today, Dale Earnhardt Jr. owns auto dealerships.
But there was a time when the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver worked in one. In the service department. Quick lubes were his specialty.
Can you hear it now? Dale Earnhardt Jr., twice a winner of the Daytona 500, 26 times a winner in NASCAR's Sprint Cup Series and a two-time NASCAR XFINITY Series champion, asking if you wanted the synthetic or conventional blend?
And all those customers he's served? What would they say now?
"I remember when he changed the oil in my car."
"That boy sure could align a front end."
Neither has happened, unfortunately. No one has come forward to fondly relive past oil changes with the Hendrick Motorsports driver.
And he didn't do alignments.
"I was the quick lube guy," NASCAR's most popular driver for 13 years running said Tuesday during Media Day activities at Daytona International Speedway. "I got moved to a couple of different positions for a couple of months at a time. But I always kind of ended up back at the quick lube machine. That was strictly my job."
The 41-year-old worked in the service department at his father's dealership for "a couple of years." The utensil drawer in the kitchen of seven-time series champion Dale Earnhardt held no silver spoons.
"I changed a lot of oil," Earnhardt Jr. said. "I had a lot of fun doing that. I think I was there for two-and-a-half years. It was a fun time but I haven't really run across anybody that has said, 'You used to change the oil in my car back then.' "
Earnhardt Jr. will be bidding for a third Daytona 500 title Sunday when NASCAR begins its 2016 season in earnest. The season-opening points event is scheduled to being at 1 p.m. ET (FOX, MRN, SiriusXM NASCAR).
It seems speed has always been a factor in Earnhardt Jr.'s life. Today it's on the track. Back in the service department, it was get 'em in and get 'em out in 29 minutes or less.
"I got put on commission for a week and I made too much money; they took me back off commission because I was doing them in eight minutes," he said. "I was doing them pretty fast when I learned that I could make money doing it. I was going through them pretty quick."
A little too quick, perhaps?
"One time I drove out of the lot without the filter on the car and ran all the oil out of it right through the parking lot," he admitted. "It was hilarious."
This article originally appeared on Nascar.