339 – Andy Petree (Part 1): Key to Cheating

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Dale Earnhardt Jr. sits down with long-time crew chief, car owner, and broadcaster Andy Petree for part one of a conversation filled with epic tales about Petree’s rich history and innovative practices in the sport.

Before Petree joins them at the table, Dale Jr. and co-host Mike Davis relive a busy weekend for Dale. First, he tells all about his trip to Darlington Raceway to pace the field with his restored Chevrolet Nova that his dad once raced. He talks about the whole experience including telling old racing stories with family during the car ride down, seeing the industry’s reaction in the garage, and what it was like getting on track. Both Dale and Mike then address the disappointment of NASCAR on FOX not showing the Nova on track.

Dale Jr. fills everyone in about his trip to the Nashville Fairgrounds last Friday. He clears some things up about his future racing plans there and Speedway Motorsports’ efforts to bring NASCAR back. Hear what the Nashville community needs to know about Marcus Smith’s plans.

Next, Andy Petree enters and the stories about his career in racing start rolling. He shares what initially interested him about racing and his plans to drive a car he built with a friend before a NASCAR Hall of Famer walked in and took the seat. Hear what happened next and how it set Petree’s career path.

Another NASCAR Hall of Famer helped Andy get his first job in NASCAR, performing a role he had no experience in. Find out what happened and how that team ultimately won the Cup championship that year.

Petree’s path then paired him with Benny and Phil Parsons. Hear what tricks he had up his sleeve when he won his first Cup race as a crew chief with Phil in 1988.

Crew chiefs often search for physical advantages on the cars but mental advantages prove just as important. Listen for the stories about mind games he played with his drivers to make them believe they had an upper hand. You won’t believe the results.

Andy was Harry Gant’s crew chief when he won four races in a row in 1991. Find out how the car was built differently than most. Hear what competitive advantages Gant had and the rulebook loopholes Petree attacked.

Then, the story of how one ‘competitive advantage’ ultimately led Petree to take it off the car after qualifying during race weekend for fear of being caught.

Part 2 of Dale Jr.’s conversation with Petree continues next week as they dive into his years working with Dale Sr. for Richard Childress Racing.

In Ask Jr. Presented by Xfinity, Dale details the ride-a-longs he gave the I AM ATHLETE crew last month and their reactions. He and Mike then discuss the changes expected with the Next Gen cars. Finally, hear what Dale thinks about the potential for street course races in NASCAR.

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348 episodes