Dale Earnhardt Jr. Leaves NBC for Amazon Prime, Warner Bros. Discovery: Sources

NASCAR’s biggest name is on the move.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. will leave NBC and head to newcomers Amazon Prime Video and Warner Bros. Discovery Sports, sources familiar with his decision said Atletico.

Earnhardt is expected to take a break this season and then resume his broadcast career in 2025, when WBD Sports and Amazon begin their coverage.

The move appears to give WBD Sports and Amazon instant credibility as they begin their series. Each will have five races per season. WBD Sports races will be broadcast on TNT, streamed on Max and will have a Bleacher Report component. NASCAR complements WBD Sports’ robust NBA, NCAA Tournament, MLB and NHL programming lineup.

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Amazon’s Prime Video subscription service already offers exclusive NFL games on Thursday nights and is a leading contender to add the NBA when the league decides on its partners in upcoming negotiations.

Earnhardt informed NBC of his decision last week, according to sources familiar with the conversations. Although Earnhardt is expected to take a year off, he has the flexibility to make another deal with one of the two television partners, which are Fox and NBC. There are no substantive talks at this point with either.

“Dale Earnhardt Jr. is beloved in the NASCAR world and has made numerous contributions to NBC Sports, from his work as an analyst on our NASCAR coverage to his experiences as a correspondent at major events such as the Indianapolis 500, the Kentucky Derby, the Super Bowl and the Olympics,” an NBC Sports spokesperson said Atletico. “We thank Dale and wish him the best for the future.”

Earnhardt said on his podcast in early February that he hoped to stay with NBC, although he acknowledged he is without a contract through 2024.

“I definitely love being in the broadcast booth and I want to continue to do so,” Earnhardt he said on his podcast, “Download Dale Jr.”. “We’ve had some interesting conversations with all of NASCAR’s television partners. My Home and My Love is on NBC and I would love to get back to them. So we’ll see where it goes.”

Earnhardt, 49, joined NBC in 2018 soon after retiring from racing.

NASCAR has moved to four partners in its latest television deals, remaining with incumbents NBC and Fox, which will continue to broadcast 14 races in 2025 to go along with a combined 10 from WBD Sports and Amazon. Overall NASCAR deals are for seven years and an estimated $7.70. billion dollars in total. The current season remains exclusively on Fox and NBC.

In 2025, Amazon and WBD Sports will join coverage and will each build around Earnhardt.

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(Photo: Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)