NASCAR fans love to party. It's just a fact.
If you've ever been to a race, you know that the folks in the grandstands tend to like getting nice and toasty hours before the race even begins. Partying in the infield at Talladega Superspeedway? Pure debauchery like you wouldn't believe. Tailgating the Daytona 500? That's where folks make stories to tell their grandkids.
Now, once upon a time, some of your favorite NASCAR drivers were just fans, too. So, by the transitive property (yep, I'm pulling out high school math terms for this one), NASCAR drivers also like to party.
A large part of NASCAR's appeal is that it has its roots as an everyman's sport, with relatable stars that have strong connections to the fans. Being able to share a beer and shoot the shit with a star like LeBron James or Tom Brady is out of the question for the average joe. But, you're a lot more likely to run into someone like Dale Earnhardt Jr. at a bar, and a couple shots and beer backs later, he's regaling you with stories from the good old days.
Here, we'll look at seven full-time drivers in the NASCAR Cup Series who you probably wouldn't mind sharing a beer (or 20) with.
Chase Elliott is a pretty popular guy. He's been the Most Popular Driver in the Xfinity Series twice (2014 and 2015) and is currently riding a four-peat for the award in the Cup Series. A popular dude makes for a great drinking buddy, it's as simple as that.
But, honestly, Chase also seems like the kind of guy who's super cool to his fans and who'd cover everyone's bar tab without even blinking an eye.
First off, considering the epic mullet he's rocking, you just know that Ryan Blaney likes to throw 'em back. But, unlike his iconic haircut, Blaney isn't just about partying in the back. He keeps that lifestyle front and center.
When he earned his first Cup Series win back in 2017, the Team Penske driver partied until three in the morning. His neighbor Dale Earnhardt Jr. even dropped off four coolers of beer to keep the party going. Man, what a night that must have been!
Back in the day, Denny Hamlin was known to throw quite the epic rager when he had a waterfront house in Lake Norman, North Carolina. He's also good buddies and business partners with none other than Michael Jordan, so you know those parties had to be legendary.
Today, Hamlin is one of NASCAR's top vets, and while he may not be throwing all-nighters like he used to, you know he's got plenty of stories in the back pocket that he'd be more than willing to share over a cigar and a couple cold ones.
Considering that he was formerly sponsored by Budweiser and is currently sponsored by Busch, you have to imagine that Kevin Harvick likes beer. And, he doesn't just love rocking the merch. He enjoys drinking it. A whole lot of it.
After winning the Cup Series championship back in 2014, Harvick and his team apparently tore through 80 CASES! That's 1,920 beers, for all you number crunchers out there. Now, how many of those were drank and how many were just sprayed all over the place in celebration? That technically wasn't determined.
In any case (pun intended), you have to imagine that Harvick still keeps the beer flowing, even after all these years.
Everyone needs a drinking buddy who's a wildcard, and Austin "The Ace" Dillon is definitely a wildcard. After winning the 2018 Daytona 500, Dillon got a tattoo that just said "Daytona 500 champ." On his butt. Austin, you crazy for that one!
Dillon also lives in a barn, which as we all probably know, is one of the most underrated places to throw a couple back. They call them "barn burners" for a reason. On top of that, Dillon has been known to party with fans, which makes him a solid addition to the list in my book.
You know that Kurt Busch, having competed as a full-time NASCAR driver for over 20 years, has plenty of epic stories under his belt. He's gotten to face off against some absolute legends of the game -- Dale Earnhardt famously flipped him the bird during the 2001 Daytona 500 -- and, despite racing in a new era of the sport, he has an appreciation for racing's glory days.
Oh, and he likes to party, too. After winning the 2017 Daytona 500, he famously partied with four-time Super Bowl champ Rob Gronkowski, who was pulling for Busch to win "because he's the man." High praise from one of the most renowned partiers of the 21st century.
Then, there was the time Busch rented out a house near Wrigley Field and hosted about 100 people during a Cubs game. Oh, and he picked up the tab, too, which was around $20,000.
Here's the thing: Brad Keselowski likes to drink beer, and he likes to party. He's been known to kick it with fans, BYOB style, which you definitely have to respect.
And, of course, who can forget his infamous drunken interview on SportsCenter, moments after winning the 2012 Cup Series championship? You chug a giant beer on national television, you go down as a beer-drinking legend. It's as simple as that.
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