5. The Finish Of The Daytona 500
The 2001 Daytona 500 was truly a tale of tragedy and triumph for several reasons.
Unfortunately for those that believe the official story of Dale Earnhardt’s untimely death in that years great american race, it is also used as one of the biggest arguments for why Earnhardt is still alive. While the proposed reason why Dale Earnhardt would fake his own death vary from conspiracy theorist to conspiracy theorist, most of them agree that the ending of The Great American race was a little too suspicious.
In fact, it is claimed by a few of them that the finish, which saw Dale Earnhardt Jr push Michael Waltrip to the line to win his first Daytona 500 while Dale Earnhardt was launched straight into the wall right behind them, was a way to set up the future of the sport and say goodbye to the past. Again, theory for why Earnhardt would fake his own death varies from person to person, but some believe that Dale wanted his son to take the spotlight.
4. Delayed Replay
Another thing that bothers some fans about the Dale Earnhardt’s untimely death was how long it took for The NASCAR on Fox crew to actually show the incident or cut to a live shot of Dale Earnhardt’s destroyed race car. Of course this is probably one of the more flawed arguments from conspiracy theorists, especially since it would be impossible for anyone to sneak Earnhardt out of the car in that amount of time, its still highly debated by theorists.
Again, for the conspiracy theorists to be right on this occasion, NASCAR officials would have had to sneak Earnhardt out of the track with thousands of fans looking on from the stands and more watching from the infield. It would have also had to have been kept away from the media officials, other NASCAR officials that weren’t in the know and anyone else who might be able to the expose what was really going on.
3. Allegedly Spotted After The Fatal Incident
According to a user on grassrootsmotorsports.com back in 2008 “Two days ago, I was in a Flying J truckstop, in Austin Texas. I saw Dale Earnhardt gassing up a motorhome! I swear it was him! I tried to approach him, but he pulled his hood of jacket over his head, and bolted into RV. He sped out of the parking lot with his headlites off. Several other people saw him too. The clerk reviewed CCTV tape, and she agreed with me, as did a Texas trooper. Has anyone else seen him? Seriously now.”
Whats interesting here is that three separate people claim to have seen the same tape and all agreed that it must have been Dale Earnhardt gasing up at the station. While it is easy to discount one persons account of the events, it is a little bit harder to dissuade three people from thinking what they saw that day. It is also worth noting that the tape was played several times on the security cameras, which means they got a good look at him.
2. The 2001 Coke Zero 400
In fact, it was only months after Dale Earnhardt had hit the wall straight on at over 180 miles per hour and while the mood was somber for most of the weekend’s festivities for The Pepsi 400, the mood became absolutely electric when Dale Earnhardt Jr came from eighth to first to win for the first time at Daytona. The most was capped off with Michael Waltrip and Dale Jr celebrating together on top of their cars after having dominated at Daytona that year.
With that being said, there are a few key calls during the race that makes some fans believe that it was staged to happen that way. In fact, some believe that NASCAR was intentionally trying to reset up Dale Earnhardt’s victory in 2000 at Talladega, but this time have Dale Earnhardt Jr take the flag. Not only was the moment reminiscent of what his father did last year, it was also believed to be a sign that NASCAR wanted to focus on Dale Jr as the future.
1. Wanting out of the limelight
Heading into the 2001 Daytona 500, Dale Earnhardt had already amassed 76 victories, seven championships and one Daytona 500 victory, which meant that he had pretty much accomplished everything the sport had to offer at their highest level. Not only that, Dale Earnhardt had also been launched into hero like status over the past couple of years, which was said to make The Intimidator uncomfortable.
With that being said, the reason why this is number one on the list is due to the fact of just how unbelievable it all is. In fact, any NASCAR fan, past or present, would probably find it hard to believe that Earnhardt didn’t soak up the attention given to him during his historic career. Unfortunately for these fans, there are reports of Dale Earnhardt acting very suspicious leading up to the 2001 Daytona 500.