‘The Indimidator’s’ granddaughter hits the track

12-year-old Elledge has bright future

“I didn’t get to meet him, but I know it makes my mom and dad proud that I run this number,” 12-year-old Karsyn Elledge said of her grandfather, Dale Earnhardt. I’ve only heard how great it was and about the legacy. I’m excited and proud to carry it on.” Enlarge photo

Ben Margot/Associated Press

“I didn’t get to meet him, but I know it makes my mom and dad proud that I run this number,” 12-year-old Karsyn Elledge said of her grandfather, Dale Earnhardt. I’ve only heard how great it was and about the legacy. I’m excited and proud to carry it on.”

SONOMA, Calif. – She’s 12. She has a pink firesuit emblazoned with cartoon characters. She has an infectious smile and a winning personality. She rides with the No. 3.

And she’s an Earnhardt.

That last item makes Karsyn Elledge’s journey into motorsports more noteworthy than that of many other sub-teens who want to take a shot at racing.

Karsyn is the daughter of Jimmy Elledge (a former NASCAR crew chief) and Kelley Earnhardt-Miller. Earnhardt-Miller is the daughter of the late Dale Earnhardt Sr., one of the greatest drivers in NASCAR history. Earnhardt drove the No. 3 through a spectacular NASCAR career that ended with his death in the 2001 Daytona 500.

Karsyn plans to race winged mini-sprints on the West Coast this summer with the sponsorship of the Nickelodeon network. Her pink car carries the stylized 3 made famous by her grandfather.

Karsyn has been racing go-karts for four years and has impressed many, including her uncle, Dale Earnhardt Jr., who often has commented about her skills at a young age.

Asked about her grandfather Saturday at a press conference announcing her new sponsorship, Karsyn said, “I didn’t get to meet him, but I know it makes my mom and dad proud that I run this number. I’ve only heard how great it was and about the legacy. I’m excited and proud to carry it on.”

There is no grand design for Karsyn to eventually try NASCAR racing, but she has moved along quickly in kart racing.

“It’s definitely fun to watch,” said Jimmy Elledge, who owns QRC, a California-based company that builds and sells racing karts. “The ride we’re on is interesting, for sure. This is a great opportunity with the sponsorship and all. Where it goes, who knows? It’s still hard for me to believe she’s 12 years old.”

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