Sometimes the best competition is a friendly team rivalry.
For JR Motorsports in the NASCAR Nationwide Series some would think it’s when the owner, Dale Earnhardt Jr., gets behind the wheel of one of the team’s cars and gets shown up by the driver of the other. Everyone wants to beat or impress the boss.
When the NNS heads to Joliet, Illinois on July 9 for the Dollar General 300 presented by Coca-Cola, there will be new meaning to team rivalry. A head-to-head competition has been set-up with Suave Men, a JRM partner, which will see the No. 88 Suave Men Chevrolet compete against teammate Danica Patrick in the No. 7 Chevrolet.
The JRM competition is simple: each team’s performance will consists of their practice speeds, qualifying time, pit stop averages, and finish in the race. The night will be full of fun and who can be more competitive. However, this is bigger than just racing or bragging rights.
Following the event, whichever team comes out on top will have Suave Men donate $40, 000 donation made to the Dale Jr. Foundation, benefiting underprivileged kids in education and confidence. It’s the main reason the foundation was started in 2007 and now helps support other charities such as the Victory Junction Gang Camp and Make-A-Wish of Central and Western North Carolina.
Earnhardt Jr. says about his motivation, “I decided to start the Dale Jr. Foundation as a way to help the ‘underdogs,’ those out there who haven’t been as fortunate or had the opportunities to reach their dreams, or the strong-willed big sister (or other family) there to push them along."
“With this foundation, we plan to assist those in need who are trying to reach their goals and just need that once chance to give them an opportunity to succeed.”
Earlier this year, Earnhardt Jr. donated $1 million to the Victory Junction Gang Camp for a new Dale Jr. Coral and Amphitheatre. Fans will remember that at Charlotte in May, he granted his 200th wish as part of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. During the Sprint All-Star race weekend he not only met 16-year-old Jeff Buzzell, but also took him out on the stage during driver introductions.
Suave Men became a partner with JRM earlier this season and will be featured on the No. 88 car in three events this season. Kelly Bires drove it to a 14th place finish at Nashville in April. The head-to-head challenge at Chicagoland will be their next appearance.
In honor of the event as it draws near, Suave Men have released two YouTube videos in order to get the fans pumped up for the race. One is a breakdown of a pit stop and shows the JRM crew practicing in order to make sure they remain mistake free during the race weekend.
DJ Copp, who’s become a bit of a celebrity thanks to ESPN, also works for JRM and got the trash talk started.
“The Suave Men’s head-to-head challenge is going to leave the 88 team choking again,” he said. “Last year one of the tire changers even got replaced by me because he couldn’t get the job done when the pressure got the best of him.”
His statement was then responded to by a crewmember of the No. 88 who said, “We’ve always run good at Chicago and well we’ve always run better than the seven car. Tony Eury Jr. [crew chief] and the boys don’t stand a chance versus the 88 car. I can pretty much guarantee we’ll win.”
The second video will allow fans to hear from Earnhardt Jr., crewmembers, and Tony Eury Sr. and Jr. as well as learn more about the challenge. To learn more about JR Motorsports you can visit their Web Site
To learn more about the Dale Jr. Foundation you can visit their Web site
Or you can follow Suave Men Racing and JR Motorsports on Twitter: @SuaveMenRacing, and @JRMotorsports
Video links: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmZv4x_QYIk