Juniors Super Spots

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NEW YORK - A pair of television advertisements featuring Dale Earnhardt Jr. that debuted during Sunday's Super Bowl were voted among the top 10 most popular in USA TODAY's annual Ad Meter survey.

Viewers judged Earnhardt's Bud Light ad seventh overall and his spot for Nextel as 10th best among a field of more than 60 commercials that ran during the game broadcast.

In the Bud Light commercial, Earnhardt, dressed in casual clothes and driving a street vehicle, races a corporate jet to return a lipstick to a young lady, who explains to a surprised Junior that the lipstick isn't hers. That commercial received a score of 8.34 out of a possible 10 by viewers.

In the advertisement for Nextel, Earnhardt and teammate Michael Waltrip are sitting in the stands at a football game when Junior's Nextel phone rings. It's the coach, wanting him in the game. The No. 8 scores a touchdown, then does celebratory donuts in the end zone.

That spot was given a 7.89 rating by the viewers, the best of any product not directly tied to food or beverages.

"A few years ago, you'd need 'Dale Earnhardt Jr., Race Car Driver' superimposed on the screen," said Roger Vandersnick, NASCAR Managing Director of Brand and Consumer Marketing. "No more. Everyone knows who Junior is."

A different ad for Bud Light was the highest-rated at 9.04.

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