It’s been a bad week for NASCAR driver Tony Stewart. On Thursday he had a second surgery to repair the broken tibia and fibula in his right leg after a crash during a race Monday night in Iowa. He’s now in North Carolina where a specialist inserted a metal rod into his tibia. In a statement, Stewart-Haas racing says he’s now out “indefinitely”.
This is Stewart’s third crash in weeks and many conversations have been around the moonlighting that drivers participate in. Many drivers, including Stewart, participate in other races–on courses that may not be as safe or provide the same standard of care that would come at speedways for the Sprint Cup.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. believes drivers should race where they want. In an interview with USA Today Sports he shared his opinions about racing outside of the Sprint Cup:
“Tony loves to race, and I think he should race as much as he wants,” Earnhardt told USA TODAY Sports at Hendrick Motorsports headquarters, where he launched the team’s new social media command center. “There’s danger in racing. These types of things are going to happen.
“I think he can do whatever he wants to do. He’s having fun living his life. You’ve got one life, man. You can’t sit there and sit on the sidelines worrying about what’s going to happen to you. You’ve got to get out there and do it. He’s just doing what he enjoys. Everybody else understands the risk and reward, and it was worth it to him.”
While there is some truth to this statement, most driving teams have rules around allowing drivers to participate in numerous extra-curricular races. In fact, they frown upon it. In an interview with USA Today Sports, Henrick Motorsports President Marshall Carlson talked about his reservations:
“If they want to race anything other than with us, we have to have a conversation about it,” Carlson told USA TODAY Sports. “We make sure there aren’t any sponsor conflicts, scheduling conflicts or safety concerns.”
Safety is the concern, as smaller tracks don’t have the same safety standards, and with Stewart scheduled for more than 100 races this year, it’s clear the concern is legitimate.
In the meantime, Stewart will have alot of time to mull over this argument. He’s out at least three to four months and even then we’re not sure if he’ll be 100%.
I hope he heals and returns soon. He’s a staple in NASCAR racing.
Your Jersey Girlfriend,