Dale Jarrett has weighed in on the circumstances behind the crash at the Daytona 500 Monday night. With only seconds left in the race, Ryan Newman flipped his car over several times. After a brief stint in the hospital, he was released Wednesday afternoon. Now, Jarrett, who won the Daytona 500 in 1993, 1996 and 2000, says that while the situation is tragic, it's part of the reality of racecar driving.
Speaking with Motorsports on NBC on Tuesday, Jarrett praised Newman as a fierce competitor and a good friend but said simply that "as drivers, this is what we do."
"No one ever made me sit in one of these cars, took me out and made me strap me in. It was a choice that we make. We wanna be there. Part of the adrenaline rush, part of the rush of competing is getting yourself into a position to win the biggest races. And the Daytona 500 being the biggest race in NASCAR, Ryan Newman had done exactly that."
"Does everyone like that type of racing all the time," Jarrett continued. "You know there's four times a year that you're gonna put yourself in a different situation than what you are at most other racetracks. Anything can happen anywhere at any time as we've seen at different types of tracks, but these two particular tracks [lend] themselves to that. You know this going in, you might not like it, I don't think it was something that it was Ryan Newman's favorite thing to do, but he was really good at it, and he was showing that again yesterday."
"If you're gonna compete, you gotta go out and do it," Jarrett added.0comments
"We've established that over the last 10 years," Newman explained at the time. "That's when cars get airborne. They raised the back of the cars up an inch and it just packs more air underneath them. I hope we keep them on the ground and get lucky because I don't think they've done a good job of keeping them on the ground or making an effort to keep them on the ground."