Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Dale Earnhardt Jr. also seeking answers for recent form

LONG POND, Pa. — Dale Earnhardt Jr. is used to the questions.

Every time his on-track performance falls off — for whatever reason — it seems everyone wants to know why.

Take Friday's media session at Pocono Raceway. After three second-place finishes in the first eight NASCAR Sprint Cup races of 2016, Earnhardt has failed to crack the top 10 in five subsequent events and slipped from sixth to 13th in points.

"I've been racing in this series a long time, and I've been asked that question dozens and dozens of times, like 'Where do you need to improve?' — no matter what team I was racing for, no matter what year is was," Earnhardt said. "Even if you knew you wouldn't tell. I mean you can't say 'Them guys in the body shop, they need to get going.' You're not going to throw anybody under the bus."

In any case, everybody seems to be behind Joe Gibbs Racing and Furniture Row Toyotas this season, even Earnhardt's powerhouse Hendrick Motorsports team.

"You're looking at everything they're doing," he said of other teams. "You watch a guy real close all weekend make changes and go through the process of the whole weekend, and nothing really stands out."

Cup qualifying: Brad Keselowski earned the pole for Sunday's Axalta 400 at Pocono, leading a front row sweep for Team Penske with a lap of 181.726 mph in qualifying on the 21/2 mile track. He edged Joey Logano (181.400).

IndyCar: Series leader Simon Pagenaud earned the pole for today's Duel in Detroit Race 1 on the city's streets. His lap of 1 minute, 14.9166 seconds led Team Penske's sweep of the top three with Helio Castroneves second and Juan Pablo Montoya third to kick off a weekend doubleheader.

NHRA: Ron Capps set a track record and led the first day of Funny Car qualifying at the New England Nationals in Epping, N.H., with a run of 3.865 seconds at 325.92 mph. Steve Torrence led Top Fuel and Jason Line topped Pro Stock.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. also seeking answers for recent form 06/03/16 [Last modified: Friday, June 3, 2016 10:10pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Gators rally past Kentucky, streak hits 31

    Blogs

    LEXINGTON, Ky. — For the second week in a row, Florida found itself storming the field in a game that came down to the last second. A 57-yard field-goal attempt by Kentucky kicker Austin MacGinnis came just a few feet short of making history and snapping a 30-year losing streak, as the No. 20 Gators escaped a …

    Florida wide receiver Brandon Powell (4) scores a touchdown during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Kentucky, Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, in Lexington, Ky.
  2. Pen makes it way too interesting as Rays hang on for 9-6 win

    Blogs

    A couple of home runs provided the news pegs of the night for the Rays, but it was more topical to talk about what nearly happened as they hung on for a 9-6 win over the Orioles.

    Lucas Duda's three-run homer in the third inning was the Rays' record-breaking 217th of the season, as well as his …

  3. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Saturday's Rays-Orioles game

    The Heater

    RHP Jake Odorizzi admitted he probably should have gone on the DL sooner than late July for the back stiffness that was keeping him from throwing the ball where he wanted to. He has since found an impressive groove, with another strong outing Saturday.

  4. Matt Baker's takeaways from Florida State-N.C. State

    College

    RB Cam Akers still looks like a former high school quarterback at times. His first two touches (30 yards) were special, but the freshman juked instead of powering ahead on his third (an unsuccessful third-and-1 rush). That's why the Seminoles are easing him in, as they did with Dalvin Cook three years ago.

    Running back Cam Akers carries for a first down during the third quarter as FSU eases the freshman into the college game.
  5. An attempt to project what Rays will look like in 2018

    The Heater

    BALTIMORE — We know what the Rays look like this year: a team that had enough talent but too many flaws, in construction and performance, and in the next few days will be officially eliminated from a wild-card race it had a chance to win but let slip away.

    Adeiny Hechavarria, high-fiving Lucas Duda, seems likely to be brought back.