Dale Jarrett was behind the wheel for the final time in his storied career Saturday night in the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race. His father, a two-time Cup champion, thinks his son is retiring at the right time.
"I would hate to see him hang on for four or five more years or whatever the case might be," the elder Jarrett said. "People have a tendency to remember you for the last thing you did. I want people to remember him as a champion and a winner in racing. If you hang on too long, sometimes people lose track of that."
Dale Jarrett won 32 races, including three Daytona 500s. The 51-year-old star won the points championship in 1999, but hasn't been a contender in recent years. He was honored before the race with a video tribute.
Jarrett will be ESPN's lead analyst for its Sprint Cup races, again following his father, a longtime TV commentator. Ned Jarrett thinks that will help the withdrawal symptoms that come with leaving the sport.
"He's had a great career and I think it's time," Ned Jarrett said. "He's going out on his own terms, and I think that's good. But also it's good to see him going into another career in broadcasting, sort of following in my footsteps. All of that makes me proud."