Dale Earnhardt Jr. Wins Richmond Crowd Noise Ranking In Cheesy Fashion

When the number popped up on the screen, I thought, "Oh no!"

As I stared at my handheld decibel meter to get Dale Earnhardt Jr.'s noise level during Richmond International Raceway's pre-race introductions, the sport's most popular driver peaked at – wait for it – exactly 88.0.

It's so cheesy, isn't it? Driver No. 88 gets exactly 88 decibels to win the weekly noise contest. At first, I wasn't even sure anyone would believe me.

Fortunately, Sprint public relations man Chris Madigan was standing with me and watching the noise meter as well. He confirmed that he saw the 88.0 pop up as the peak reading and said I could use him as a witness.

So there you go. Sometimes, the cheesy is reality. And Dale Jr. really won the Richmond noise contest with an 88.

The full rankings for this week:

Driver        dB Type of Noise Explanation
1 Dale Earnhardt Jr. 88.0 Cheers It's cheesy, but I promise it was a real number.
2 Kyle Busch 86.1 Boos Not many cheers for eventual race winner
3 Jeff Gordon 85.4 Cheers Fans hoping for repeat of Phoenix race
4 Mark Martin 85.2 Cheers Still a sentimental favorite
5 Jeff Burton 85.1 Cheers Much love from home-state fans
6 Denny Hamlin 84.9 Mostly cheers Local favorite almost swept weekend
7 Carl Edwards 84.8 Cheers Rated higher than usual
8 Juan Pablo Montoya 84.7 Boos Zero love for the pole-sitter
9 Kasey Kahne 84.3 Cheers Many males cheer for him, too
10 Jimmie Johnson 83.9 Boos Bad starting spot hurt noise level
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