Retired NASCAR driver Kenny Wallace believes he "touched a nerve" when he told fans who criticize the sport to "quit wasting your breath."
"Everybody is complaining and bitching and moaning about NASCAR," Wallace said in a video post on Tuesday. "PMA. Positive Mental Attitude. If you don't like NASCAR, save yourself. Don't get on social media and go, 'NASCAR does not care about me.' His voice turned deliberately whiny on that last part of his quote to mock critical fans.
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"I don't get it," Wallace continued. "You watch the whole race, then the whole race wasn't the way you wanted it, and so you rush to social media. Quit wasting your breath. Live life. Be happy. It's gettin' old." he said.
He then resumed the whiny voice, repeating: "NASCAR don't care about me."
"What does that mean?" Wallace asked. "Don't you have a family? My gosh. I'm married, got grand babies, run my dirt car, drink a Bud Light. C'mon man, y'all are better than that."
On Friday afternoon, Wallace tweeted that he guessed the video "HIT A NERVE," based on its 216,000 views on Twitter and 139,500 views on Facebook. "For a total of 355,716 people watched," he tweeted.
His tweet drew all types of reaction, including from fans who repeated their disdain for what they said the sport has become: boring.
When a fan tweeted him that "NASCAR has been going away from their roots for the past 17 years = empty seats," Wallace replied: "You make me laugh ... .If you truly don’t like something then you should not even care about. Why do you talk about it?"
Most of the reaction was far more positive, including from retired driver Dale Earnhardt Jr.
"Kenny is my friend," Earnhardt tweeted. "He's a cool ass dude."
Said current driver Ty Dillon: "You the man Herm."
Wallace had six top five finishes in the NASCAR Cup series over 20 years -- 1990 to 2012. He retired from NASCAR after an Xfinity series race in 2015.
In his video, he said he'd been thinking of producing such a video criticizing whiny fans for eight years.
The timing for maximum exposure in the racing hotbed of the Carolinas couldn't have been better: The NASCAR All-Star Race is set for 8 p.m. Saturday at Charlotte Motor Speedway and the Coca-Cola 600 for 6 p.m. May 27.
Staff writer Mike Reader contributed.