Tony Stewart, perhaps grittiest and most colorful NASCAR driver, showed why he–and his one-of-a-kind personality–is vital to the sport in his first interview this week after he underwent surgery for a broken leg that has sidelined him for the season.
Stewart, who suffered the injury after his car flipped in a crash in August, was again “Tony being Tony” when he bluntly stated that what he missed about the race track.
Stewart, who has had a love-hate relationship with the press, also showed that he had a soft spot for the media.
“Oddly enough, I actually miss you guys, which tells you that I’m not healthy yet,” Stewart said.
The 90-minute interview session is something the sport has tried to manufacture a bit to no avail because authenticity cannot be faked or created. Stewart will not make “The Chase” after the the playoff lineup is set after Saturday’s race in Richmond, and the interview this week showed why he will be missed.