And I remember in 2000 and 2001, and we were kids, trying to figure out what we were going to do and not many people know it, but when Jimmie was getting out of that Herzog car, they were talking to me about driving that Busch car. And for him to win five championships and for him to send me a text message back the other day, that meant more than anything probably anything anybody's ever said to me almost. I mean, you can ask my wife, I went on and on about it for a long time.
That dude is completely incredible, and everybody makes rumors whether he's going to be the best there's ever been; and I would have to agree that he probably will be.
When you crossed the finish line, I think your words were: "Hey, career, welcome back, baby."
Those were not mine.
Those were mine (Laughter). I was talking about my career of course, been a rough couple of years.
I think my comments were explicit, and very awesome and extremely excited. And just all of the above. I appreciate him saying that comment, but that's not a comment I would make about myself. I learned the hard way, there are no guarantees in life. So I'm just taking it in.
Obviously the past will always be a part of you and always be a part of the narrative of your story, but a day like this, does it close the door in one aspect? Those experiences will always still be there, but does that close the door in your mind on the last two or three years in some ways?
Yeah, that's a very good question. You know, I guess I haven't thought about it until you really mentioned it. And I suppose in a lot of ways, it does.
You know, I never will, and I don't want to forget those memories and the things that I learned through those experiences, even though they were difficult and challenging.
You know, I think at a certain point it is good to shut the door on some things and look for it and move on. I think to finally have - I don't know if the monkey on your back is really the right expression; but to finally get that victory. It's one thing to get back in a race car; it's another thing to have a good day, but it's a whole another thing to win a race.
This day in a whole lot of ways takes the weight off my shoulders and is a breath of fresh air and very relieving and probably does allow me to live a little bit more in the moment and focus on the future, and not so much in the past and what's happened. Ultimately that's the reason I came back is what's to be, not what has happened. And to start fresh and have a second career and race for a championship.
Did you feel a need to prove something?
I don't know if I ever felt a need to prove it to anyone else. Proving it to myself, when I'm in the race car, I'm probably the hardest on myself than anyone else. Proving it to myself meant a lot, and you know, I - yeah, it wasn't the others I was worried about. It was myself.
I know in the past we've had long green flag runs up here, and today, a lot of cautions; would you explain how your car was? And Ty, it seemed like MWR has come a long way in the last year or two with Bowyer and Truex; do you feel that the hard work has paid off or is there more to come?