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Sources say Dale Earnhardt Jr. is departing NBC to join Amazon Prime and Warner Bros. Discovery

The biggest name in NASCAR is making a major move.

According to sources briefed on his decision by The Athletic, Dale Earnhardt Jr. is leaving NBC and will be heading to the new racing platforms Amazon Prime Video and Warner Bros. Discovery Sports.

It is anticipated that Earnhardt will take a break for this season and then return to his broadcasting career in 2025 when WBD Sports and Amazon kick off their coverage.

This move is expected to bring instant credibility to WBD Sports and Amazon as they launch their series, each featuring five races per season. WBD Sports races will be aired on TNT, streamed on Max, and will also have a component on Bleacher Report. This aligns NASCAR with WBD Sports’ existing NBA, NCAA Tournament, MLB, and NHL programming schedule.

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

Sources familiar with the conversations mentioned that Earnhardt informed NBC of his decision last week. While he is expected to take a year off, he still has the flexibility to make another deal with one of the two broadcasting partners, Fox and NBC. However, there are currently no significant talks happening with either.

A spokesperson from NBC Sports told The Athletic, “Dale Earnhardt Jr. is beloved in the NASCAR world and has made numerous contributions to NBC Sports. We thank Dale and wish him the best going forward.”

On his podcast in early February, Earnhardt expressed his desire to stay with NBC, despite not having a contract for 2024. “My home and my love is at NBC, and I’d love to be back with them,” he said.

Earnhardt, who joined NBC in 2018 after retiring from racing, emphasized his passion for being in the broadcast booth and his hopes to continue doing so.

NASCAR’s recent TV contracts involve four partners, including incumbents NBC and Fox, who will still air 14 races in 2025, along with the combined 10 races from WBD Sports and Amazon. The total estimated value of the NASCAR deals over seven years is $7.7 billion. The current season remains exclusively on Fox and NBC.

In 2025, Amazon and WBD Sports will add to the coverage, both building around Earnhardt.

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(Photo: Jared C. Tilton / Getty Images)

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