Dale Earnhardt, Junior made quite an entrance Tuesday afternoon riding in the Hendrick Motorsports helicopter
His pilot landed at the Governor's Mansion and Earnhardt quickly exited and made his way inside the Mansion for a few private moments with Governor Henry McMaster before making their way to the front of the mansion where cameras and reporters waited.
Earnhardt, Governor McMaster and Darlington Raceway President Kerry Tharp took their turns in front of the microphone talking about what makes Darlington special.
For Earnhardt, 2017 will be a return to competition at the Track Too Tough To Tame as last year, he was sidelined for most of the summer and fall with concussion like symptoms.
However, since last year's Bojangles Southern 500, Earnhardt has been at Darlington as he held a private test session to determine if he was indeed ready for a return to racing.
He obviously was and even though the 500 is several months away, Earnhardt was glad to come to the Capital City to talk about a track where he hasn't won, although his father did record nine Cup wins and the younger Eanrhardt made an intriguing analysis which discussing Darlington's reputation as the "Track Too To Tame".
"It's the Dale Earnhardt of race tracks," Earnhardt, Junior said.
"It's the Intimidator of race tracks. People ask me why did Dad like the place so much and I think he admired it being so similar to him. It really did intimidate drivers."
Earnhardt says running so close to the wall lap after lap is mentally challenging and really takes a toll not only on the tires, but the drivers.
"Trying to keep the car off the fence all race long is so mentally challenging," Earnhardt said.