Why Dale Earnhardt Jr. Broke Down in Tears Over Today's Martinsville Race

Sunday afternoon, JR Motorsports made a big statement at the Cook Out 250 Xfinity Series race. Noah Gragson took second place and won the Dash 4 Cash $100,000 bonus while Josh Berry secured his first career national series victory, prompting a strong response from Dale Earnhardt Jr. The NASCAR legend shed several tears after watching Berry "live his dream."

Earnhardt spoke to multiple media members after the race and explained why he was so excited about his team's win. He told Bob Pockrass of Fox Sports that securing a win as an owner is very different than getting one as a driver. "I can see the whole career. I can see Josh's whole career and how he got to this moment, so there's a lot more emotion involved," Earnhardt explained.

The comment about Berry's career references his time as a Late Model racer. He was only in the No. 8 Chevrolet Camaro for part of a 12-race schedule, but he made the most of this opportunity and scored a win for his fellow "short track guys." Berry has previously driven for JR Motorsports in 2014-17, but a lack of funding kept him from making more appearances for the team.

"I've never cried like I cried today over racing," Earnhardt added while chuckling. "Anything I ever did or anything my dad did. I don't know why that brought that emotion out of me because I've never experienced that before, but I just wanted this for Josh.

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Earnhardt was not the only person that spoke highly about Berry in the wake of the historic win. Gragson also kicked off his own interview by talking about his teammate's place in the sport. "I’m a big fan of his and it’s really humbling to be on the same race track as him," Gragson told Fox Sports. "He’s a legend in short track racing."

Following the win, several people weighed in and called for Berry to get a season's worth of funding. They expressed the opinion that he has the talent to win even more races with Earnhardt's former number but said that he needs the sponsors to help him achieve this goal. Several tweeted at Tire Pros while others called out Marcus Lemonis, the CEO of Camping World. He has helped sponsor several drivers in the Camping World Truck Series during the 2021 season.