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Tony Stewart, Stewart-Haas Racing - Q&A

Like I said, it wasn't that - we never argued about it. He asked me my opinion, and it was just Gene being - Gene was so excited about doing this and having his hand involved in it, and that's great. I mean, for me as his partner, I love seeing him engaged now. I'm really proud of him for being as active in this process as he was. I was just worried about the time frame, and that's what he hired me for. My job is to protect this company, to look out for it, to make sure what we do we do in the right timing, and like I said, Greg was the big factor of assuring me that we could do it in the right time frame and not hurt the effort that we've got with Ryan trying to make the Chase and run for a championship this year.

Q:
Just want to go back to, I can understand and appreciate your point about you've got to live life with your limited time here. Obviously your situation is different from mine or a lot of other people, and certainly a lot of people depend on you here in this organization. How does that responsibility change? Does this incident make you rethink that to some degree in that balance between your responsibility to the folks in here to your right to do whatever you want in your life? Has that changed?

Tony Stewart:
Well, in saying that I'm going to live my life doesn't mean I can do anything I want. But you can go in there and ask those guys, none of those guys missed a day of work through this. Nobody has got a cut in paycheck. It hasn't changed their life as far as what they do and what their job and what their responsibilities are here.

My role in the company has definitely changed, but we've got a guy out here that you couldn't ask for a better guy to come fill in and having Mark and Arlene here; thank you, guys. I appreciate you guys being here, first of all. That means a lot.

But this company has never stopped. I know what you're saying about the responsibility, but I mean, I've been a part of meetings for the last three weeks. I haven't really missed work. I mean, the only part of my job that I've missed as far as responsibilities to this company is I haven't been in the race car. Granted, I'm not trying to downplay that, but I am going to go to Tallahassee, Florida, tomorrow to a Bass Pro Shops appearance; I'm going to be in Richmond on Thursday. I'm not missing work. I'll have missed one appearance since this has happened, and other than being out of the race car, that's all I've missed. That's all I've let down as far as my responsibilities.

Like I said before, if I got hit by a car on the street coming to the shop and this injury happened, I would still have missed the same thing. You know, you can't guard against everything, so as far as thinking about it, everything that I do we sit there and try to make sure we're as safe about doing it as possible. It was an accident. It wasn't something that - it wasn't something that was pre-planned. It wasn't anything other than just an accident that happens just like anything else in life that happens out there, just like Bobby's deal this week.

That's why they call it accidents; nobody does it on purpose.

Q:
First of all, it sounds like you're going to be in Richmond this weekend. I just wanted to see if that was the case, if you'd be at the track. And also, going forward are there any more surgeries or anything like that planned with your leg? What's the medical plan going forward?

Tony Stewart:
You know, when the accident happened on Monday night, they did surgery right away just to clean up the scenario as far as the bones, the tissue, the skin. There was a lot of skin damage in the accident. So they got that all taken care of in Iowa, which I will say that from the time that the car stopped in the wreck to the time that I got to Eddie and Dana Jarvis's house, that's about as good a care as I possibly could have imagined ever would have happened.

Jay Mercer was the first one to get to me at the race car, and he's actually a doctor, I believe, in South Dakota, and then I've actually stayed in contact with him since. But he's got a very good medical staff that takes care of the racers at Huset's Speedway in South Dakota and they go down to Oskaloosa and help during Nationals week.

The care that his staff gave me at the track and all the way to the first hospital, and when we got to Des Moines and got to the hospital there, their staff in that first surgery went really, really well. They flew me back to Charlotte on Wednesday, two days after the first surgery, and on Thursday morning at 8:00 I went into the second surgery, and that was to insert the titanium rod that's in my leg right now, and that rod will stay in. So there's no anticipated extra surgeries after this. We're on the mend.




Related Pictures

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Tony Stewart, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series driver and co-owner of Stewart-Haas Racing, speaks to the media in his first appearance since his sprint car accident at Stewart-Haas Racing on September 3, 2013 in Kannapolis, North Carolina. (Photo Credit: Streeter Lecka/NASCAR via Getty Images)
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