At long last, the next Earnhardt has arrived.
Former NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. and his wife, Amy, announced via Twitter on Tuesday the birth of their daughter, Isla Rose Earnhardt. This is Earnhardt's first child.
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Earnhardt had previously told the Observer that he hoped his daughter would be born on April 29, so she would share a birthday with Earnhardt's late father, Dale Sr. The late Earnhardt died in a last-lap crash at the 2001 Daytona 500.
"How cool would that be?” Dale Jr. said at the time. “I would love that.”
Earnhardt announced his retirement from NASCAR in November after 19 years in NASCAR's top circuit, the Cup Series. Between the time he announced his retirement last April and November, he reiterated on multiple occasions that his desire to start a family was a key factor in his choice to retire. (He also struggled with concussions and recurring symptoms in his final two seasons.)
Earnhardt and his wife began dating in 2009 and were engaged in 2015. They wed on New Year's Day in 2017, and then announced that Amy was pregnant in September.
It's time for Earnhardt to begin his newest job, arguably his toughest yet: being a dad.