Michael Waltrip challenges Dale Jr. to go Dancing With The Stars

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Michael Waltrip took a big step when he agreed to compete on Season 19 of “Dancing With the Stars.”

Now, Waltrip has gone and put his foot in his mouth by trying to kick Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the behind, so to speak.

When Junior sent Waltrip a congratulatory tweet for making it past the first round on DWTS, Earnhardt also used the hashtag #HugeCajones.

Waltrip didn’t seem to know what “cajones” meant, pronouncing it in “ca-jone-ies” in an interview with NASCAR.com.

But then Waltrip made the fateful move: he challenged Earnhardt to follow in his footsteps (sorry, we couldn’t avoid it) and join DWTS next season, regardless of how far Waltrip advances in this season.

“Dale Jr. said that this was the last thing he would do and so did I, yet here I stand. So it’s up to you big boy, bring your nation to Dancing With The Stars next season and let’s see what you’ve got.”

Here’s the video that includes Waltrip’s challenge:

http://www.nascar.com/en_us/news-media/videos/2014/9/18/nascar-dancing-with-the-stars-michael-waltrip.html

So far, Junior has not tweeted or commented on whether he’ll accept Waltrip’s challenge.

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IndyCar’s season finale at St. Pete approved to have 20,000 fans

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The NTT IndyCar Series’ season finale will be permitted up to 20,000 fans, making the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg possibly the circuit’s most well-attended race of 2020. The race originally was scheduled as the season opener before being moved to Oct. 25 because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

IndyCar has enjoyed limited crowds at Road America, Iowa Speedway, Gateway, Mid-Ohio and this weekend’s doubleheader races at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, which could have up to 10,000 fans in attendance. That had been the largest maximum grandstand crowd for an IndyCar race this season.

At a St. Petersburg city council meeting Thursday, Mayor Rick Kriseman approved plans by race organizers Green Savoree Racing Promotions to hold the Oct. 23-25 weekend for the IndyCar Grand Prix of St. Pete with 20,000 fans who would follow health and safety protocols that include mandatory temperature checks and masks.

 “My thanks to Green Savoree Racing Promotions and IndyCar for their flexibility and resilience during this challenging time,” Kriseman said in a release. “I know that everyone is excited to get back on the track in St. Pete. I can’t wait for Oct. 23rd. I know everyone will embrace this race the St. Pete way, adhering to the COVID-19 health and safety protocols. Let’s have some great racing in the Sunshine City.”

Paddock and the pit lane will remain closed to spectators, and social distancing of at least 6 feet will be observed on site.

“Our entire team greatly appreciates the patience and understanding of our ticket holders as we worked through this process with Mayor Kriseman, City Council and local health officials,” Kim Green, co-owner, chairman and CEO of Green Savoree Promotions. “It’s important for everyone who attends to read and follow all the COVID-19 protocols to contribute to a fun, safe and successful event for us all.”

“The ongoing guidance and support of Mayor Kriseman, City Council, and the City of St. Petersburg’s event team have been phenomenal,” said Kevin Savoree, co-owner, president and COO of Green Savoree Promotions. “We also would not be in this position to move this spring tradition to fall without Firestone’s unwavering commitment and dedication. It’s going to be a terrific weekend again in downtown St. Pete in three weeks featuring world-class racing from INDYCAR.”