Some people are determined to prove there are no limits, and NASCAR driver Jeffrey Earnhardt is one of them. Whether he’s pushing himself to win, noodling for catfish, or duck hunting with his dog, Earnhardt has his eye on excellence. And to maintain his adrenaline-driven lifestyle, he’s gotta eat well too. It’s no surprise he chooses Dalstrong’s high-performance knives to fuel his fire.
Who is Jeffrey Earnhardt?
After the Talladega race, a lot more people know the headline details about Jeffrey: he’s a professional stock car racing driver, and he’s the grandson of 7 Time NASCAR Cup Champion Dale Earnhardt and nephew of this generation’s most popular driver, Dale Jr.
Those are the headlines, but there’s a whole lot more to Jeffrey Earnhardt both on and off the track. In the world of NASCAR Xfinity race car driving, Jeffrey is committed to truly “Earning Earnhardt” and making his own history on the track.
When he’s not racing, Jeffrey can usually be found outside. He’s a true outdoor enthusiast and does a lot of hunting and fishing, including noodling catfish.
“It’s no secret I’m a big outdoorsman and harvest a lot of my own food so having a premium knife partner onboard is really exciting for me. I can’t wait to introduce Dalstrong to our fans and see them cutting up steaks in the campgrounds during race weekends.” - Jeffrey Earnhardt
The Earnhardt family has a lot of NASCAR racing history
When we say Jeffrey Earnhardt comes from a family with a lot of NASCAR history, we really mean it. The Earnhardts have been NASCAR driving champions since the 1950s. Jeffrey’s great grandpa was racing driver Ralph Earnhardt (named one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers), his grandpa was 7 Time NASCAR Cup Champion Dale Earnhardt, and his uncle is Dale Jr. (one of the most popular current NASCAR drivers). The family has octane in their veins and each of the Earnhardt NASCAR champions has brought something new to the table to advance the sport.
Ralph Earnhardt, The Great Grandfather:
Ralph Earnhardt started racing in 1949, went full-time in 1953, and won 350 NASCAR races in different series over the next 20 years. Ralph Earnhardt was the first car builder and driver to understand and use tire stagger (tires of different circumference between the right and left side of the car) to encourage a natural lean to the left. It’s common practice now, but was pretty revolutionary (pun intended) at the time. In 1972, Ralph and his son Dale competed in a race at Metrolina Speedway.
Dale Earnhardt, The Grandfather:
Of course, Dale is still the most famous Earnhardt. If you’re not already familiar with Dale Earnhardt, here’s the highlight reel of his NASCAR successes and all the reasons why he’s so famous:
- The team Dale Sr. owned raced from 1975 to 2001 in the former NASCAR Winston Cup Series (now called the NASCAR Cup Series).
- Dale Sr. won 76 Winston Cup races over a 26-year career, including four Winston 500s and the 1998 Daytona 500.
- Dale Sr. is the only driver in NASCAR history to score at least one win a decade in 4 different decades (from 1979 to 2000).
- He earned seven Winston Cup championships, as did Richard Petty and Jimmie Johnson.
- He is the only driver in NASCAR history to win seven championships under one single points system, and the only driver in NASCAR history to finish 1st or 2nd in the standings 10 times under a single points system.
- Dale Sr.’s aggressive style behind the wheel earned him the nicknames "The Intimidator", "The Man in Black", and "Ironhead".
Obviously, Dale Earnhard Sr. had a profound impact on NASCAR and competitive racing during his lifetime, but it was the tragic nature of his death that changed the industry. On February 18, 2001, Earnhardt died in a sudden last-lap crash during the Daytona 500 due to a basilar skull fracture. Ever since then, safety improvements and upgraded regulations, equipment, and practices have been implemented across the racing industry, especially NASCAR. He set the standard for competitive racing and ultimately made the sport safer for future generations.
Dale Earnhardt Jr., The Uncle:
Dale’s son — and Jeffrey’s uncle — Ralph Dale Earnhardt Jr. is semi-retired now but still competes part-time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, driving the No. 88 Chevrolet Camaro for his team JR Motorsports. He’s this generation’s most popular professional stock car racing driver, as proven by the awards on his shelf. He won the Most Popular Driver Award fifteen consecutive times from 2003 to 2017.
After driving the No. 8 Chevrolet Monte Carlo for Dale Earnhardt, Inc. (DEI), his father's team in the NASCAR Cup Series, for much of his early Cup career, he moved to Hendrick Motorsports to drive the No. 88 in 2008. He remained with HMS until his retirement as a full-time driver in 2017. Earnhardt retired with 26 wins in the Cup Series, a total that ranks him tied for 31st in NASCAR history (with Fred Lorenzen) as of March 2021.
Jeffrey Earnhardt isn’t just a race car driver. He’s also a dedicated athlete and outdoorsman with proven skills as a martial artist, hunter, and fisherman. Earnhardt has a love of extreme sports and has tested his skills in a lot of arenas. He made his amateur debut in mixed martial arts in 2012, defeating Chris Faison by unanimous decision in Charlotte, North Carolina.
He has a new hunting buddy, a chocolate lab named Bama who loves retrieving ducks and chilling out on a ForeverLawn K9 hammock. The two of them stay fit and ready to race by going hiking, jogging, and hunting together.
Jeffrey also likes to go fishing and is pretty proficient at noodling, the art of catching catfish by dangling your arm as prey. His largest catch on record is a whopping 54 lb catfish.
Jeffrey’s career in racing and NASCAR xfinity series
Jeffrey began his race career on the dirt tracks of Wythe Raceway in Rural Retreat, Virginia. He scored three feature wins and finished in the top-five in division points to win Rookie of the Year, and from then on he knew he wanted to drive for NASCAR. The following year he moved up to the sportsman division at the Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Virginia, where he competed as a teammate to RCR developmental driver Allison Duncan and finished the season in the top-10 of the division standings.
In 2006, General Motors created a program to support drivers — including Jeffrey — they thought could be racing superstars. In 2007, he drove the No. 1 Chevrolet for Andy Santerre Motorsports in the NASCAR Busch East Series. He finished fifth in the 2007 Busch East point standings and won the Most Popular Driver Award.
Since then, he has continued to make waves and win awards. His career with NASCAR was solidified in 2010, when he drove several races with Rick Ware Racing which qualified him to drive on all NASCAR tracks in the 2011 season. Jeffrey raced with a lot of different teams and sponsors over the years, and in January 2022, it was announced that Earnhardt would drive part-time for Sam Hunt Racing in 2022.
Earnhardt's sponsor for most of the races in 2021, ForeverLawn, also moved with him from JDM to Sam Hunt Racing. Dalstrong sponsored Jeffrey to drive the No. 35 car for Emerling-Gase Motorsports in the spring race at Phoenix and was a partial sponsor for him in the No. 3 car for Richard Childress Racing in the spring race at Talladega. He finished that race in a career-best second place behind Noah Gragson.
Some history of the #3 car
For Jeffrey, and for millions of NASCAR fans across the globe, “Number 3” or “#3” are pretty much synonymous with Dale Earnhardt, the Intimidator. He drove the number 3 car from Chevrolet for Richard Childress Racing for so long that for many fans, number 3 automatically means Earnhardt.
While the Earnhardt name is the one that springs to mind, the number 3 car has had a lot of impressive drivers behind the wheel. Here’s some good trivia:
- NASCAR Hall of Famer Edward Glenn “Fireball” Roberts. Roberts won the 1959 Firecracker 250 at Daytona in a No. 3 Pontiac fielded by Jim Stephens.
- The cars looked a lot different back in the 1950s, and so did the tracks. Danny Letner won in the #3 at Oakland Stadium — a 5/8-mile track featuring a 62-degree bank.
- Racing greats Dick Rathman, Paul Goldsmith, and Earl Balmer all drove the #3 in the 1950s.
- In 1961, Hall of Famer David Pearson teamed with legendary crew chief Ray Fox to win three times in the No. 3.
- One driver won seven races in one year (1963) in the number 3. It was NASCAR Hall of Famer, Junior Johnson. He won nine times in the number 3 car, the 2nd highest number of wins in that car.
- Buck Baker started 67 of his 635 NASCAR Cup Series races in the No. 3.
- Buddy Baker (no relation), had the first two wins of his career in the number 3 car in 1967 and 1968. At 6-foot-6, Baker is the tallest driver to win in the No. 3.
- Charlie Glotzbach started his NASCAR Cup career in 1960 and didn’t retire until 1992 at the age of 54. He won four times in Cup, including a 1971 race in the No. 3 at Bristol, sneaking just ahead of Bobby Allison and Richard Petty.
- Ricky Rudd was the last driver to drive the No. 3 before Dale Earnhardt, and he won twice in the No. 3 for Childress in 1983.
- The Intimidator won 67 of his 76 NASCAR Cup Series career in the No. 3 Richard Childress Chevrolet.
- Austin Dillon, grandson of Richard Childress, won in the number 3 car at Texas Motor Speedway in 2021.
- Jeffrey Earnhardt came in 2nd in the number 3 at Talladega in 2022.
This car has seen a lot of victories, great tracks, and incredible drivers. Legends have started and finished their careers in this car.
Earnhardt racing in the number 3 at Talladega
Back in 2000, Dale Earnhardt Sr. had one of the most incredible wins in the number 3 at Talladega. With only four laps left in the race, he managed to pull ahead from 18th place (passing his son Dale Jr. in the process) to take the win.
Twenty-two years later, another Earnhardt got to be behind the wheel of the number 3 at Talladega. Jeffrey got the fastest average lap speed (a whopping 182.560 mph) in the final round of Xfinity Series qualifying and was able to take pole position for the race the next day. The headline 'Jeffrey Earnhardt wins pole' rang out among the racing community and he even had the legendary crew chief Larry McReynolds on the pit box. Larry was crew chief for Earnhardt Sr. when he won his only Daytona 500 in 1998.
When Richard Childress announced that Jeffrey Earnhardt would be driving the No. 3 Xfinity car, it caused a sensation in the news. The race itself, sponsored by Foreverlawn Inc., Dalstrong, and Super-Pufft, was the most watched event in the series since Daytona 2017.
Jeffrey racing in the #3 caused a lot of excitement in the NASCAR circuit. Jeffrey securing pole position to race the iconic #3 for the RCR race at Talladega was immediately posted to Jeffrey’s own website, of course. The NASCAR website shared the news too, generating a lot of buzz for Jeffrey Earnhardt to drive iconic No. 3 RCR car in Xfinity race at Talladega. And then Jeffrey finished second in the #3 at Talladega while wearing a bad*ss helmet featuring his grandfather Dale Earnhardt. It was already a pretty historic event, and having Larry McReynolds go back to NASCAR and to be crew chief for yet another Earnhardt perfected the legend.
Following the race, Jeffrey said it still all feels like a dream. He thanked ForeverLawn, Super-Pufft, and Dalstrong for giving him the chance to fulfill a dream, Richard Childress Racing for providing the car, and Larry McReynolds (AKA America’s Crew Chief) for being by his side as crew chief. There is obviously a lot of love and respect between Earnhardt and McReynolds too.
NASCAR reporter Bob Pockrass captured some of the emotion from Jeffrey, who said “I could feel my heart beating in my ears. … My grandpa is my hero.” The second-place finish generated a lot of hunger for a win, too. People are definitely keen to see Jeffrey get more races, and Dalstrong agrees. Whether or not he can go on to win xfinity, one thing is for sure, it's great to see an Earnhardt driving again.
Jeffrey Earnhardt and Dalstrong
So how did a race car driver end up partnering with a culinary company? Easy. Dalstrong is on a mission to turn a stale, bland industry on its head, and Jeffrey is just the kind of guy to do it. Jeffrey has a lot of history behind his last name, but he’s determined to create his own future and earn his own legacy.
Jeffrey Earnhardt’s relationship with Dalstrong officially kicked off during the NASCAR Xfinity Series Beef 300 at Daytona International Speedway in February of 2022, but the two teams had been chatting for a while before that, and Dalstrong knew Jeffrey was a great fit. Being a racer, athlete, and sportsman, Jeffrey lives every day with drive and dedication. He’s a modern day warrior who isn’t afraid to put in the work to get the best out of life.
Jeffrey comes from a proud heritage of racing excellence and continues to push the pace and define his own legacy. Dalstrong is inspired by that same high-octane warrior spirit of teamwork in pursuit of victory. Those who look to the past with respect, honor the traditions that brought us here, and build on that foundation to drive progress forward. Like Dalstrong, Jeffrey honors our modern day warriors and is committed to furthering his community and his craft.
Learn more about Jeffrey Earnhardt's partnership with Dalstrong here.
Jeffrey Earnhardt’s favorite kitchen knives
Jeffrey has a pretty big selection of Dalstrong knives and cookware now, but he says the chef’s knives from the Shogun series and Omega series are neck and neck for most frequently used in his kitchen. They are both striking to look at and extremely versatile, so for daily cooking they get a lot of action.
Dalstrong also makes a lot of really unique knives, and Jeffrey confessed that he has a lot of fun with the Ronin Series Chef’s Sword we gave him too.
When he’s out hunting or fishing and needs a knife for outdoor cooking and slicing into something fresh caught, Jeffrey likes the Delta Wolf series. They’re extremely badass and built to endure the rugged outdoors. Named after the elite Special Operations Force, the Delta Wolf Series features onyx-black titanium nitride blades for added protection against corrosion and a deep, non reflective black color.
The camouflage G10 handle completes the look, and it has a loop for a paracord strap and a protective leather sheath to keep the elements at bay. Plus, Jeffrey is a huge supporter of veterans and those currently serving in the armed forces, so it means a lot to him to endorse a product that supports the Wounded Warriors Project and Wounded Warriors Canada.
In fact, NASCAR racer Jeffrey Earnhardt has raised thousands for children of fallen veterans. He partnered with Nine Line Apparel CEO and with the American Soldier Network to raise awareness and funding to tackle the psychological and emotional battles affecting veterans on the home front with Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), homelessness, unemployment, reintegration, and suicide.
The Flag Waves for Jeffrey Earnhardt and Dalstrong
Dalstrong is fiercely proud to partner with Jeffrey. Being along for the ride with such a dedicated athlete is exhilarating, and it's another chance to get our hands on some great BBQ at NASCAR tailgate events.
Written by Abby PollenAbby spends her free time exploring her home turf of British Columbia’s west coast and snacking on all the wild edibles there from blackberries to maple tree blossoms. She’s a certified word nerd with a French degree, a passion for scrabble, and a repertoire of terrible puns. Some day Abby hopes to have a proper farm, but for now she’s making do with a back yard garden.