Ryan Blaney recalls the ‘coolest’ call from Sprint Car legend Doug Wolfgang after his 2023 NASCAR Cup title triumph

Ryan Blaney shared that he and Doug Wolfgang have a very good relationship in the past as well.


Ryan Blaney recalls the ‘coolest’ call from Sprint Car legend Doug Wolfgang after his 2023 NASCAR Cup title triumph

Ryan Blaney (Via IMAGO)

Ryan Blaney, the freshly crowned NASCAR champion, received a phone call that added an extra layer of coolness to his victory celebrations in Nashville. This call wasn’t from just anyone but from Sprint Car legend Doug Wolfgang, a figure deeply intertwined with Blaney’s racing heritage.

The No:12 driver’s dad, Dave Blaney, and Doug Wolfgang, Sprint Car legends, shared a relationship woven with camaraderie and rivalry. The echoes of their fierce battles, such as the legendary 1989 Knoxville Nationals, where Wolfgang secured his fifth title, resonate through racing history. In that nail-biting encounter, Wolfgang narrowly edged out Blaney by a heartbeat, leaving an indelible mark on the sport.

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Yet, beyond the track’s tensions, a unique bond flourished off the circuit, evident in Blaney’s family closeness with Wolfgang. “My dad is a huge fan of his,” revealed Ryan Blaney, shedding light on the profound admiration his father held for the iconic dirt racer. Wolfgang’s perspective, shaped by racing with Blaney’s grandfather and father, highlighted the Blaney family’s intergenerational impact on him. 

Wolfgang’s call was more than just congratulatory banter. He revealed a fascinating internal debate about imprinting from the Blaney family as a sort of “Blaney curse.” Blaney talking about the call said as quoted by On3.com;

That meant a lot to me because I love Doug Wolfgang and my dad respected him so much. That was probably the coolest one personally for me to get a call [from].

Ryan Blaney spilled some emotional fuel during his acceptance speech

Dave Blaney commenced his racing journey in sprint cars during the early 1980s, clinching the 1984 USAC Silver Crown Championship and the 1995 World of Outlaws Championship. Notable victories include the 1997 Chili Bowl Midget Nationals and the 2006 Dollar General 300 in the NASCAR Xfinity Series. Racing in the NASCAR Cup Series from 1992 to 2014, he secured 28 top-ten finishes and two poles.

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Ryan Blaney and his dad, Dave Blaney
Ryan Blaney and his dad, Dave Blaney (Credits: Front Stretch)

Amidst the celebration, Blaney’s emotional acceptance speech in Nashville revealed the sentimental journey influenced by his family’s racing legacy. He said, “Growing up, watching Dad race, that’s just what I wanted to do, and I wanted to be like my Dad.” He offers gratitude for the firsthand experience of watching his dad race and understanding the intricacies of team operations showcased a profound connection to the sport.

As Blaney basks in the glory of his 2023 NASCAR championship, Wolfgang’s call serves as a testament to the enduring connections that racing forges. The narrative intertwines past and present, capturing the essence of the Blaney family’s impact on the racing world, transcending generations.

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