HomeSportsNascarNASCAR: Dale Earnhardt Jr. Recalls Jimmie Johnson Driving Him to Hospital at Two in the Morning

NASCAR: Dale Earnhardt Jr. Recalls Jimmie Johnson Driving Him to Hospital at Two in the Morning

by Caitlin Berard
(Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

As a NASCAR driver, being a daredevil comes with the territory. And though it’s a helpful trait to have on the race track, it can easily create dangerous situations out of even the most mundane activities. Dale Earnhardt Jr found himself in such a situation while partying with Jimmie Johnson back in the day.

In an episode of the Dale Jr. Download podcast, Earnhardt detailed the horrific yet hilarious and heartwarming story. “The one story that sticks out to me is way early on in our friendship,” Earnhardt begins. “We were at Ricky Hendrick’s house, and I think Jimmie had won the race that day. So that evening, Ricky insisted that I come over and hang out, and they were all going to have a party.”

After a few drinks, the men decided it was a good idea to pour detergent into both the hot tub and swimming pool. This, of course, led to soap bubbles covering the surface of the water, making the bottom impossible to see.

“I jumped into the swimming pool,” Dale Jr. said. “I hit my head on the bottom because I couldn’t see the bottom because of the suds in it. And I’d split my forehead open. It’s about two o’clock in the morning, and I got this inch-and-a-half split my forehead. I don’t know what I’m gonna do.”

Jimmie Johnson Plays Nurse and Ambulance Driver to Dale Earnhardt Jr.

At this point, NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr is obviously bleeding profusely from the forehead. Luckily, Jimmie Johnson is fantastic under pressure and was able to not only keep his friend calm but get him the medical attention he needed.

“Jimmie says, ‘Don’t worry, Hendrick has a doctor, and we’re going to call him and we’re going to be at his office.’ So I get in the car as a passenger, and he’s the driver,” Earnhardt said. “And he drove me about a 15-minute trip over this office in the middle of the night and sat in the room while the guy sewed my forehead up, talking to me and just laughing and joking.”

“That happened a long time ago. And just kind of showed me what kind of character Jimmie is, even though we were there to celebrate his day and his victory. And everybody was there for Jimmie, and he was like, ‘Look, man, I got you. I’ll take care of this.’ And that’s just such a cool thing to do. And that’s who he is. He’s just a really good guy, who happens to be very, very good at what he does.”

Dale Earnhardt Jr could’ve had a nasty scar or far worse from his bump in pool. Thankfully, however, we’ll never know what that worst-case scenario looks like because Dale Earnhardt Jr has a wonderful friend in Jimmie Johnson.