Dale Earnhardt Jr. provides unique perspective on the Ryan Newman crash | Motorsports on NBC
I'm gonna bring in our buddy and colleague from the booth
Earnhardtjr. who happened to win a couple 500s in his career Jr thanks for joining us play yeah good to be on again so a crazy race crazy finish we've kind of given our thought give us your thought on not only the race but the accident and the announcements we've recently received about
Newmanin his health well I thought the race was pretty exciting a lot of great you know a lot of a lot of movement and guys on different strategies and guys with different agendas whether it be trying to get stage points or trying to put themselves in a better position to win the race and it was very captivating and entertaining you know it we had a lot of our big hard wrecks near the end of that race it took out a lot of competition and changed really the entire complexity of the race and we became down to overtime which is you know always raises the risk factor of an accident and for a driver and for me personally I had a ton in guiity over what we were about to see and you know I just I just knew that the risk factor was really high you know I you know we saw the finish and saw the the
crashand I don't even think I knew in that moment the severity of the accident there was so much going on this that I didn't my I didn't really catch everything that
Newmanhad went through in that moment and and you know what I think back to you know and since I've had it several hours to really reflect on...
a lot of different things and we've got some great news about
Ryanand you know we can start thinking about his his future and his recovery and what that may look like and wait we wait is what we do we wait for more information we try to you know we try to make contact with those close to
Ryanto show our support and and you reach out to those others that are affected by the accident or involved in the accident to make sure that that everybody's in good spirits as they possibly can be in this in this time but as more time has passed I really think back you guys I was on the line listening I'll talk about reaction to billion in celebrating him that was just so unfortunate to fall out from that because you know I'll think back to 2001 when when Dad had his accident and Michael Waltrip had made it all the way to victory lane himself and it's celebrating what he feels like the most incredible moment of his life waiting on dad to walk right into that victory lane at a moment to celebrate with him so I think I can tell you as a fan you know how that palette process can happen you know and how how what happened with Vinny and his team can easily happen and you know so there's a lot of other similar situations that are that are much like that to compare that to that it making it understandable for what played out with Vinny and his team so you know I found that interesting but I just can't stop thinking about Brian and I you know and just waiting on more...
news more information so we can and when when when when we can see him you know when can we physically talk to
Ryanand and you know put our own eyes on him and get a chance to to see how he's doing you are one of the very best super speedway racing and you did that by being just extremely aggressive so talk to us about how aggressive you have to be if you want to win the Daytona 500 I always had the most success by always trying to lead the race and it's not physically possible to lead every single laps but if your mind and your mentality see it every minute of the race is to try to lead I felt like that was the best defense to being involved in an accident to being called up in something in the middle of the pack and I tried every different way to run those plate races and for me that was always the most effective approach and it starts when you show up to the race track your you got to be that way in practice and you got to go out there and it might pick some people often practice that you're so aggressive but you've got to show them this is how I'm gonna race but on top of that this is what my car can do so when the green flag drops you you you see my car pull out you're gonna have confidence to follow it because you've seen what it can do all weekend instead of when I was like when I when I approached the entire race that way and the weekend that way I really really had a lot of success with it sometimes it doesn't always work and then you...
start thinking maybe I'll try a different route maybe I'm gonna sit in the back and try to take care of my stuff and they work all the way up through there late the races you know you start trying different things and maybe thinking you need to reset your entire strategy but I always end up coming back around and being aggressive and having a lot of success with that the only problem with that is it's hard to do it's hard to push yourself to work that hard every foot of the racetrack every straightaway every turn every opportunity every run the car gets every opportunity presented to you to do something with that car it's hard to stay on the wheel the entire race because everybody is Point has to take a break middle some sort of a mental break and I think you know the ones that go you know the ones that can sustain that sort of tenacity and in fierce you know competitiveness throughout those races have success there you see the same guys up toward the front was racist year after year I even said it before the finish of the race I mean Denny Hamlin if he's not the winner he's in the picture when they cross the finish line and a lot of these races at Daytona and Talladega and he proved it again you know that he's one of the best he knew I thought I didn't know whether he had lost the race or not down the back straightaway somehow or another he never gave up and he wasn't gonna win he was pushing somebody to the win and he put himself back...
in her situation where he ends up get the checkered flag so that attitude never quit never given up working to try to get to the front every single inch of the racetrack is is I think similar to Denny's and what makes him so good well you mentioned that hard-working never giving up attitude and you know
Daleas I watch the accident and since we've got both press releases on
Ryan's health that's kind of what struck me you know I look at
Newmanis that blue collar never give up tight guy and that's what I'm hoping for in his road to recovery here you race with him on the race track as you watch him trying to win a second Daytona 500 what are your thoughts on
Newmanand the racecar driver and the person well you know he has a great nickname Rocketman and he got that nickname because he sat on over ten polls one year is this thing like everywhere when I remember when we went to Bristol Motor Speedway this must be around 2003 and he broke the 15 second the 14 second barrier in qualifying and your ending like a 14.95 or something and nobody had ever ran that fast before and it look faster than anybody else it was just he was always doing something super impressive early on in his career I had a lot of good races with him on the racetrack we raced pretty hard together at Phoenix fer win there one year around 2004 we had some run-ins I put him out off I'll return to two years in a row at Atlanta and we had to have a conversation about that and...
he's a he's a big ol boy he's a he's he's kind of intimidating when you're outside the car talking about some of the booths you pulling out on the racetrack but honestly every conversation I ever had with him about racing we were able to work through you know if we ever had any kind of disagreement on the track which is really rare I could sit down and talk to
Ryanand we would he was understanding guy and kind of could see it from both sides so I really appreciate that about him and he wasn't one to hold grudges either I gave him plenty opportunities to hold a grudge against me for quite a while and racecar drivers sort of have a habit of that he did rolling across them once you saw it on that list for the rest of your career the rival of the kind of guy that could forgive and forget and move on and he has this extremely close relationship with
Ryanwith Martin Truex Jr and Miss Park are very close friends and I learned a lot about
Ryanvision and the friend he can be through that relationship that he has with Martin and that really impressed me how close they became and how how much times they would share with each other on the race weekends fishing and hunting together and it's it's you know now I I really was impressed with the Renaissance or the the sort of new chapter in his professional career I didn't know that things would improve for
Ryandinner when he went to the sixth car when he stepped away from the RCR and like the Roush...
I didn't know whether that was a lateral move or they just step back really wasn't sure exactly what that meant and I'm a caveman
Ryantook the bit between his teeth bain't he helped improve that team 10 or more spots from the year before and performance across the board got themselves into the playoffs nobody counted on them to accomplish anything like that and he took he really took a personal interest in improving that team and making better and showing people that he had something left in the tank I really really appreciate that about him and and he as a racecar driver obviously we talked about how hard he did the pass and he wore that like a badge of honor you know and we would talk about it and everybody across the garage everybody that rose out on that racetrack with him they just knew that was what you got when you lay up against Brian
Newmanhe was gonna be hard to pass and he wasn't gonna give anybody any favors out on the racetrack and I don't know I think we all kind of got to where we really appreciated that about riding especially being in the booth as a broadcaster I loved it I loved it because he could change the look of a race on the drop of a hat and you know bye-bye competing and racing and making things difficult challenging people he really made it fun as a broadcaster to collar a swim in it yeah there's no doubt
Newmanwas as tough as they come on the racetrack to call I'm excited to hopefully call some more races in...
the future but