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Dale Jr.: I ‘get star struck’ around celebrities

Earnhardt Kimmel

CHICAGO – Dale Earnhardt Jr. has been the most popular driver in NASCAR for most of his career. He makes fans swoon and leaves them star struck.

It may be hard to believe, but Junior admits he also gets star struck. Take, for example, his trip earlier this week to Los Angeles, part of NASCAR’s promotion of the Chase for the Sprint Cup.

“I got a chance to meet some celebrities and get star struck,” he said at Chase Media Day on Thursday. “I got to do (Jimmy) Kimmel, which is always a blast. He’s such a professional and makes you feel pretty comfortable.

“It was real easy, not a lot of stress, you just get nervous when you meet somebody famous, and that’s about it.”

Junior, star struck?

“Yeah, why not? I don’t feel like a star,” he said. “I’m just a race car driver. Race car drivers aren’t celebrities, in my opinion. Not like an actor or a guy who’s in a movie. To meet (actor) Mark Wahlberg, that’s a bit different than a race car driver for me.”

There’s still one celebrity Junior hopes to meet one day: “Tom Hanks. That’s the first guy I followed on Twitter and I’ve just loved his movies.

“I think he’d be fun to talk to, has a great sense of humor and probably could give you some great advice.”

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