Dale Earnhardt Jr. Is Back On Top – At Least In Crowd Noise Ratings

This is somewhat unbelievable, but it had been since Daytona in July that Dale Earnhardt Jr. got the most crowd noise during pre-race driver introductions – at least in the six races where SB Nation's decibel meter was used.

That seems crazy, but look at who had gotten the loudest reaction since then:

  • Indianapolis: Local favorite Jeff Gordon got the most noise.
  • Bristol: Brad Keselowski incited the crowd with "Kyle Busch is an ass!"
  • Atlanta: Earnhardt Jr. was fifth thanks to a bad starting spot; the crowd wasn't warmed up yet when he was introduced (Busch drew the loudest reaction).
  • Richmond: Fans spent more vocal energy booing Busch than cheering for Earnhardt Jr.
  • Dover: Drivers were supposed to introduce themselves to the crowd, but Earnhardt Jr. walked right by the microphone and didn't say anything.
  • Fontana: Jimmie Johnson got the loudest reception in his native Southern California.
Measurements weren't taken at Pocono, Michigan, New Hampshire or Kansas, but it's likely Earnhardt Jr. got the most noise in one or more of those events. Still, the sport's most popular driver hasn't topped our charts in a few months.

In that respect, Charlotte marked a return to normalcy. Earnhardt Jr. heard the most noise, ahead of Busch and Johnson.

Here are the full ratings:

Driver    dB Type of Noise Comment/Explanation
1 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 85.8 Cheers Finally back on top
2 Kyle Busch 84.3 Boos Kyle's boos angrier than JJ's
3 Jimmie Johnson 84.0 Boos Gets Gordon's reaction from 5 yrs ago
4 Mark Martin 83.7 Cheers Most fans appreciate Martin
5 Jeff Gordon 83.4 Mix More cheers as he gets older?
6 Tony Stewart 83.2 Cheers Wildly popular now; used to get boos
7 Kasey Kahne 82.1 Cheers Fans didn't expect RPM brake failure
8 Carl Edwards 81.8 Cheers Outside pole-sitter
9 Brad Keselowski 80.8 Mix Unusual amount of noise for BradK
10 Joey Logano 80.5 Cheers Always cheered; growing popularity
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