Earnhardt grew up in a racing family. His father, Ralph, died of a heart attack while working on his race car in 1973. Dale Earnhardt's career began two years later, and by 1979 he had won the Winston Cup Rookie of the Year award. For his aggressive driving style, Earnhardt quickly won the nickname "The Intimidator."
Dale drove the Black #3 car, sponsored by Chevrolet and Goodwrench. After Dale's death, the #3 was officially retired from the NASCAR circuit.
Dale was married to Teresa and they had a daughter, Taylor.
His son, Dale Earnhardt, Jr is also a NASCAR driver.